About Us

Central Valley Justice Coalition is a faith-based community benefit organization made up of passionate individuals who are responding to an urgent need to prevent human trafficking in California’s Central Valley.

Our mission is to prevent human trafficking through partnership, education and outreach.

The Justice Coalition began as an all-volunteer prayer group in 2009, eventually becoming a ministry under the wing of Fresno First Baptist Church in 2010. Jessica Pittman, then a missions pastor at the church, had a bold vision to pioneer a new kind of organization that would build bridges across sectors.  In September 2015, we hired Ryan Townsend and filed for our 501(c)3 status, becoming a stand-alone organization in 2016.

Our partners in fighting human trafficking in the Central Valley include Breaking The Chains, Fresno EOC, Fresno Police Department Vice Unit, Department of Homeland Security, F.B.I, Margaree Mason Center, Made For Them, Beauty For Ashes, Fresno Police Chaplaincy, Youth For Christ, Centro La Familia, Department of Labor, and many local faith congregations representing a diverse range of beliefs.

Ryan Townsend, our executive director, has over 16 years of experience in nonprofit work. He has a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Cal State Fullerton and an MA in Leadership from Fresno Pacific University. Currently, Ryan is involved in leading public awareness for the Central Valley Freedom Coalition which includes nearly every agency involved in Central Valley anti-human trafficking work and a co-founder of Pledge 2 Stop Trafficking, a collaborative project organized alongside Central Valley Community Foundation.

Justice Coalition staff also includes founder Jessica Pittman, Christa Wiens, Vanessa Mahlmann, and Marissa Garcia.

 

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