Who We Are
PATRICIA S. CASTILLO, L.M.S.W. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Patricia has 35 years of working to end violence against women and families. In 1990, she co-founded the P.E.A.C.E. (Putting an End to Abuse through Community Efforts) Initiative, a coalition of 48 agencies, organizations and individuals as well as the F.A.C.T. (Family Assistance Crisis Teams) Program based in San Antonio, Texas. Using collaboration and community organization she serves as an advocate, educator and technical assistance resource to civic, legal, medical, religious, activist, educational, human resource and media groups. She’s done casework at the Women’s Shelter and with inmate women and their families at the County Jail. She was the first social worker ever assigned to the police Sex Crimes Unit-Homicide Bureau. She’s a Board Member of the National Latino Alliance for the Elimination of Domestic Violence. Internationally, she has worked with the National Women’s Institute and the National Network of Shelters in Mexico City and el Centro de Justicia Familiar in Monterrey, Mexico. Other cities in Mexico she’s done training for are Acuña, Cancun and Oaxaca. She has also done training in Honduras, Brazil, China, Russia and Guatemala. She also worked for the U.S. State Department in 5 major cities in Nicaragua educating about the issue of family violence.
Veronica Davila has worked in the community for thirty years. Veronica has worked extensively with The P.E.A.C.E. Initiative since its inception. She is a formerly battered woman and has assisted other women to become free from abuse. Veronica is bi-lingual and bi-cultural and has been trained in substance abuse counseling by the Texas Ethnic Minority Substance Abuse Training Institute. The majority of her work experience has been with non–profit community based organizations. She has experience in the planning and implementation of programs working to end family violence. She has an extensive knowledge of the community because of her work and she maintains working relationships with community-based organizations that work to end family violence. She has worked in the Bexar County Jail to education male and female detainees about family violence issues. She can handle crisis calls and assist individuals seeking information or referrals. She has worked as an administrative assistant for several non-profit organizations, can do public speaking, grant writing and fundraising, experience in the planning and the implementation of special events.
MARY LOU MENDOZA
Mary Lou Mendoza is the program coordinator for Project ADVANCE* (Addressing Violence and Abuse through Networking, Client Education, and Empowerment), of the P.E.A.C.E. Initiative. She works with first time offenders of Domestic Violence in a classroom setting as well as wrap around services to address healing, choice-making, and personal goal-setting in an effort to eliminate use of violence or coercion as a means of control. As a survivor of domestic violence, Mary Lou understands the reality of abuse, escape, and transformation, and uses this experience to help others overcome victimization, and promote healing for victims and batterers. Besides being passionate about helping people, Mary Lou is an avid learner and was persistent about earning her college degrees. In February 2015, Mary Lou attained a Bachelor of Science degree in Communication with a Concentration in Cultural Competencies, and an Associate of Arts degree in Communication and Media Studies. She takes great pride in the accomplishments since overcoming domestic violence and her sincerest wish is to help others do the same. Mary Lou joined the P.E.A.C.E. Initiative in March 2012.
The P.E.A.C.E. Initiative office is open Monday - Friday, 10am-6pm. • (210) 533-2729
Our Board of Directors
Board President - Jane Shafer, SAPD, Special Victims Unit, F.A.C.T. Program Coordinator and Co-Founder P.E.A.C.E. Initiative and F.A.C.T. Program.
Board Secretary - Rachel Cavazos, Interim Executive Director, Housing Authority of Bexar County
Director - Joe M. Guerra, Retired business owner and researcher. Education activist.
Director - Debora Kueztpalin Vasquez, Fine Arts Department Director, OLLUSA
Director - Irene Chavez, Tejas Premier
The P.E.A.C.E. Initiative is a diverse coalition of grassroots organizations, public and private institutions and individuals working collaboratively to eradicate family violence through education and mobilization. We have a significant track record over our 25 year history of advocating for battered women and their children. It’s through our members that we are able to achieve these accomplishments.
Education for the prevention of family violence is one of the most effective ways of slowing the rate of people injured or killed by spouses or partners. Through our education and advocacy efforts, we are improving the community response to domestic violence and building a network of skilled, energetic advocates making a difference in the community. A strong coalition gives survivors a united voice when communicating with policy makers and potential funders of innovative domestic violence programming in this community. Click here to find out how you can join us and become a member today!