Maine Justice Foundation Leadership
Board of Directors - Executive Committee
Judith A. Fletcher Woodbury, President
Judy retired from Pierce Atwood’s Commercial Real Estate Group where her practice focused on commercial and residential acquisitions, development, sales, and financing throughout Maine and Northern New England. Pursuant to gubernatorial appointment, Judy was a public member on the Board of Licensure for Professional Land Surveyors. She served on the Boards of Directors of Friends of Casco Bay and Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Southern Maine, on the Governance Committee for the Campaign for Justice, and as inaugural Chair of the Peter DeTroy Award Committee. Judy’s education includes a JD from the University of Maine School of Law and a BA with highest distinction from the University of Maine. Judy has served on the Maine Justice Foundation Board since 2014. She has been co-chair of the Development Committee and served on the Governance Committee. Her vision for the Foundation’s future includes increasing visibility of the Foundation among attorneys and the non-legal community across Maine.
Janis Cohen (Vice President; Co-Chair, Development Committee)
Janis is a retired attorney, formerly vice-president and managing counsel of the investment lawyers at Unum Group, where her work focused on commercial real estate. In addition to working at Unum, she was in-house counsel at a non-profit educational and social services corporation, served as compliance director for the State of Maine on a right-to-treatment consent decree case, and was in private practice. She spends part of the year in Sarasota, FL, where she had been executive director and president of the board of Pierian Spring Academy, a life-long learning program that merged with Ringling College of Art and Design Life-Long Learning Academy. She served on that board and is now on the board of CenterPlace Health. She has served on a number of boards and commissions in Maine, including the ACLU of Maine, Maine Civil Legal Services Fund Commission, the Justice Action Group, the Maine Turnpike Authority, the Finance Authority of Maine and the Maine Milk Commission. Before going to law school, she worked as a psychologist and a police officer. She is an Honorary Life Fellow of the Foundation.
Jerrol A. Crouter, Treasurer (Chair, Finance Committee)
Jerry is a member of Drummond Woodsum’s Trial Services Group. Jerry has 30 years’ experience as a civil trial attorney in both federal and state courts, including employment, commercial and construction litigation. He has extensive experience as a mediator and arbitrator. He regularly appears on behalf of public utilities and interested parties in water, electric, and gas proceedings before the Maine Public Utilities Commission. Jerry was named by Best Lawyers in America as Maine’s 2010 “Lawyer of the Year” in the category of Alternative Dispute Resolution, the first year the award was given. In addition, he has served as an adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Maine School of Law. Jerry received his JD from George Washington School of Law. He joined the Foundation’s Board in January 2019.He is an Honorary Life Fellow of the Foundation.
Shelly Anarado Okere, Esq. (Chair, Governance Committee)
Shelly Anarado Okere is a graduate of the University of Michigan and Case Western Reserve University Franklin Thomas Backus School of Law and is the proud daughter of Nigerian immigrants. Shelly is currently the owner and manager of IOS, LLC: Real Estate Investments. Before starting her small business, Shelly was an Assistant District Attorney in Penobscot County where she focused on compassionate juvenile and adult prosecution. Before moving to Maine in 2014, Shelly was a staff attorney with the Legal Aid Society of Cleveland. There, Shelly’s practice focused on removing legal barriers to the health of children and families. Shelly is a Board Member of the Bangor Area Recovery Network and the Board Vice President of the Penobscot Community Health Center. In addition, Shelly serves on the Bangor School Committee Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Subcommittee as well as being a member of the Maine State Bar Association – BIPOC section.
Hon. Warren Silver (Chair, Development Committee)
Warren Silver practiced civil trial law for many years in Bangor and has been active in many organizations. He served on the Maine Supreme Court for approximately 9 1/2 years before returning to private practice.
Robin Russel (Chair, Grants, Programs & Policy Committee)
Robin Russel, JD, PhD, is a professor at the University of Maine in the School of Social Work. She began her career as a legal services attorney in Northwestern PA. She specialized in juvenile and family law. She later worked for a legal services backup center focused on juvenile justice. After receiving a PhD in social work she has taught both criminal justice and social work at four different state universities.
Michelle Giard Draeger, Secretary
Michelle is responsible for overall management of MJF in order to maximize resources that support access to civil justice, including legal aid, pro bono legal services, and related law education.
Michelle Giard Draeger became the fifth Executive Director of the Foundation in May, 2020. A native of Maine, Ms. Draeger graduated from the University of Maine, School of Law. She began her legal career as a staff attorney at Pine Tree Legal Services, focusing on cases involving domestic violence. Ms. Draeger then entered private practice at a litigation firm in Portland before moving to Washington, DC to join the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Enforcement where she worked for two years and then in the Commission’s Boston office for six years as a Senior Enforcement Counsel. Upon Ms. Draeger's return to Maine with her family, she served as an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Maine and later as an in-house counsel and compliance professional for a large healthcare entity.
Ms. Draeger has served on the Board of Trustees of the Falmouth Land Trust and has also served as Vice President and Chair of the Development Committee. Ms. Draeger was a member of the inaugural class of the New Girls Network and later served on the boards of the Maine Women’s Fund and the Maine Humanities Council.
Ms. Draeger is delighted to live, work and raise her two daughters in her native state of Maine with her husband, Scot and their best pal, Maple - their Vizsla.
Judith A. Fletcher Woodbury, President
Janis Cohen, Vice President
Jerrol A. Crouter, Treasurer
Emily Anne Arvizu
Frank Bishop, Jr., Ex Officio (Immediate Past President, MSBA)
Hudson Cook, LLP
Alyne K. Cistone
Jonathan Dunitz, President-Elect MSBA
Susan A. Faunce
Berman & Simmons
Shelly Anarado Okere
School of Social Work, University of Maine Orono
Justice Warren M. Silver (Retired)
Stacy O. Stitham, President MSBA (Ex-Officio)
Brann & Isaacson
Swanson Law P.A
Anna Astvatsaturian Turcotte
Maine Community Bank