New Faces and Places at OCVA

  • September 21, 2022
  • OCVA

As many of you know, OCVA has welcomed several new staff over the past few months, and we have seen some folks promote into new roles. We are excited to share a few updates.

New Faces

Mikah Semrow

New Section Manager at OCVA

Name and pronouns: Mikah Semrow, they/them/theirs

Current role at OCVA: Section Manager, Sexual Assault Services

Previous role or a bit about your background: I’ve worked in many different types of grantee organizations related to sexual assault, always with an eye toward services for marginalized survivors. I also had a brief but fun stint in the Housing Assistance Unit here at Commerce working on the temporary eviction rent assistance programs.

What is your favorite thing about the work you do at OCVA?  What’s not to like about the work we get to do at OCVA? This unit is full of really passionate, intelligent, funny, skilled people all putting our shoulders to the wheel to make the world a better place.

Helena Schlegel

New Program Coordinator in the Office of Crime Victims Advocacy VOCA section

Name and pronouns: Helena Schlegel, she/her/hers

Current role at OCVA: Program Coordinator, Victims of Crime Section

Previous role or a bit about your background: I previously worked in both community and system-based advocacy roles in Skagit and Whatcom counties, supporting individuals and communities hurt or harmed by crime and/or violence.

I am a new mom to my newborn baby, Finley, and a dog mom to a Border Collie mutt and a Springer Spaniel. In my spare time, I enjoy getting outside with my family, reading, gardening, and competing in triathlons. In the summer I also enjoy open water swimming in all of Washington’s beautiful lakes.

What is your favorite thing about the work you do at OCVA?  I come to this position with perspective and experience providing direct services, and look forward to being able to use my past experience to continue to support programs providing essential support and services to victims of crime.


Name and pronouns :  Mia Davidson, she/her/hers

Current role at OCVA:  Program Coordinator, Violence Against Women Section

Previous role or a bit about your background:  I started at OCVA in an admin position about three years ago, then transitioned to a Grant Specialist position, learning the ins and outs of grants – from application through execution, and of course, compliance. I am now a Program Coordinator responsible for managing grants in central Washington.

What is your favorite thing about the work you do at OCVA?  I really enjoy learning from my colleagues, getting to know grantees and the work they do, and perhaps more importantly, the opportunities I have to take on a variety of projects. It makes me really happy to know that my work can potentially positively impact survivors and their families across the state.

Dave and Noodle, Trisha Smith's Dogs

Home office co-workers Dave and Noodle

Name and pronouns: Trisha Smith, she/her/hers

Current role at OCVA:  Assistant Managing Director

Previous role or a bit about your background –
I began my work at OCVA nearly a decade ago. Most recently I was the Sexual Assault Services Section Manager. Prior to joining OCVA I managed domestic violence and sexual assault services programs, and also had the opportunity to provide training and technical assistance across the state.

The Assistant Managing Director role is new for OCVA, and I am excited. I enjoy updating and simplifying systems, and helping to improve the ways in which we do our work. This role will provide me the chance to spend more time on OCVA processes and operations, and our team has a lot of great ideas.

What is your favorite thing about the work you do at OCVA?
The people. I value the connections I have with the incredible service providers across WA State, and I have wonderful colleagues. We lean into this work with curiosity and a commitment to expand the ways we think about healing services and prevention. I am always learning, and I have seen a lot of positive changes.

And, as much as I love people, I really enjoy that I get to work from home with my dogs always nearby (Noodle and Dave, pictured above).

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