Judi Zneimer, MA, Senior Admissions Coordinator at the Phoenix House Academy in Los Angeles, was recently honored with an invitation to the first ever United State of Women summit June 14 in Washington, DC, organized to celebrate women’s achievements and discuss solutions to critical issues that still require action.
Solution Seminars enabled attendees to share best practices on a wide variety of issue areas, while speakers included President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Oprah Winfrey, and a host of women’s rights activists, innovators, and media personalities.
One of ten Los Angeles women involved with the Los Angeles STAR Court (Succeeding Through Achievement and Resilience), Judi helps provide referrals to specialized services for underage victims of sex trafficking, alongside attorneys and representatives from the D.A. Office, Probation Department, Department of Children and Family Services, Alliance for Children’s Rights, and others. Judge Catherine Pratt spearheaded inclusion of human trafficking at the summit, secured invitations for the team, and was among the summit speakers.
“This event was the highlight of my entire professional career,” Judi said. “It was such an enormous honor to be asked to attend and to be included among the select few, while ten thousand women applied to be considered and invited.”
Judi joined Phoenix House specifically to work with victims of human trafficking. “Most people think that human trafficking takes place in other countries, but it is happening every day on our streets. Thousands of girls, victimized daily in Los Angeles County, need our help. The work of Phoenix House and its collaboration with the Probation Department is invaluable in helping victims of human trafficking by providing substance abuse treatment and mental health therapy to girls enslaved by traffickers and controlled with drugs.”
In April, Judi received an award from the Los Angeles County Department of Probation and a Commendation from the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors for her work with commercially sexually exploited children (CSEC) of Los Angeles since the project’s inception five years ago. She was also recognized for her contributions to the “Empowerment Project” curriculum, currently a pilot program that will be used across the state of California as a prevention and intervention curriculum with the CSEC population.