CPCS MANAGEMENT TEAM
44 Bromfield Street
Boston, MA 02108
Anthony J. Benedetti, Chief Counsel
Anthony J. Benedetti is Chief Counsel of the Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS), the Massachusetts agency responsible for providing legal services to those who are unable to afford it in cases where there is a constitutional or statutory right to an attorney. After graduating from Boston College and Suffolk University Law School, he worked as a public defender trial lawyer in the CPCS Brockton office representing clients in the Plymouth County District and Superior Courts. In 1998, Attorney Benedetti became the CPCS General Counsel, responsible for providing legal counsel and support to the Chief Counsel, and maintaining a leadership role in carrying out of the agency’s fiscal, human resources, and operational responsibilities, internally and externally. In addition, he was the agency representative before the executive, legislative and judicial branches on budget and legislative issues. He was selected as Chief Counsel in 2010.
Attorney Benedetti is an active long-time member of the Massachusetts Bar Association and Boston Bar Association, as well as the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. On the national level, Anthony is a member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the National Legal Aid and Defender Association (NLADA) and the National Association for Public Defense.
Prior to coming to CPCS, Lisa served as the Associate Director of HR and as Interim Vice-President for HR, Labor Relations, Compliance & Affirmative Action/Title IX at Mass Bay Community College. Before that, Lisa worked at the Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) as the HR Director for the Lemuel Shattuck Hospital. She has another ten years of experience as a Diversity Officer and ADA Coordinator for several EOHHS agencies, including the Department of Children & Families; Lisa also served five years in a similar role at American Friends Service Committee in Philadelphia before moving to Boston. Lisa first worked in state government as an MBE/WBE/Affirmative Market Program Compliance Officer with the Division of Capital Asset Management & Maintenance (DCAMM).
She began her career as a Grants Manager at the Bread and Roses Community Fund in Philadelphia, working with community-based groups organizing for social change.
The first in her family to graduate from college, Lisa received her Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communication from West Chester University in Pennsylvania and, twelve years later, her Juris Doctor degree from Northeastern University School of Law,
Josh Dohan is Director of the Youth Advocacy Division, the juvenile defender branch of the Massachusetts statewide public defender agency, the Committee for Public Counsel Services. Josh became a public defender in 1988 and joined the Youth Advocacy Project, the predecessor organization to the Youth Advocacy Division (YAD) at its inception in 1992 as its first staff attorney.
Using a Positive Youth Development Approach, YAD lawyers (both staff and private) and social workers work with children and youth in the Massachusetts criminal and juvenile legal systems to advance their legal and human rights, promote their healthy development, and help them achieve their legal and life goals. All YAD attorneys and social workers are trained education advocates and receive training on being trauma responsive and demonstrating cultural humility. YAD consists of about 70 staff members (including lawyers, social workers, and administrators) and about 500 private assigned counsel.
YAD actively partners with other state agencies and community-based organizations to help enhance fairness and safety for all children and families at risk of court involvement. YAD’s scope of juvenile representation includes all delinquency and Youthful Offender cases, juvenile murder cases in Superior Court, juvenile appeals, and revocations of Grants of Conditional Liberty. The Youth Advocacy Division also is home to the EdLaw Project (which provides leadership and training on education advocacy to YAD and CAFL) and the CPCS Parole Advocacy Unit. The Parole Advocacy Unit leads, trains, supports and oversees staff and private attorneys representing all Juvenile Lifers and some other adults seeking parole release or facing parole revocation from the adult correctional system.
YAD has been recognized by the U.S. D.O.J., the National Legal Aid and Defender Association, The National Juvenile Defender Center, the Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative, the MacArthur Foundation, YouthConnect, The Robert F. Kennedy Children’s Action Corps, the Parent Professional Advocacy League, and others for excellence in Juvenile Defense.
Josh is President of the Board for Youth Advocacy Foundation, and a member of the Child Welfare and Juvenile Justice Leadership Forum, the LeadBoston class of 2001, the Institutional Review Board of Tufts University, and the Community Advisory Board of the Institute on Race and Justice at Northeastern University. Josh is a returned Peace Corps volunteer, received his A.B. from Harvard College, and received his J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law
Michael Dsida has overseen CPCS’s Children and Family Law Division since 2006. His career has focused primarily on advocacy on behalf of clients in state intervention/child welfare matters.
Beginning in 1988, Mike worked for the Cook County Public Guardian, representing children in Chicago’s Juvenile Court. His work included class litigation seeking to address systemic problems relating to sibling visits and placement, permanency planning, and caseworker assignment policies and practices. One of his cases was Suter v. Artist M., 503 U.S. 347 (1992), in which Mike sought to have the Supreme Court uphold the enforceability of federal requirements regarding family preservation and reunification. In 1995, Mike established the Civitas ChildLaw Clinic at the Loyola University Chicago School of Law, one of the country’s first law school clinics to focus on state intervention/child welfare matters. Mike also worked as a Senior Legislative Attorney at the Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau.
Mike is a graduate of the University of Chicago and Harvard Law School.
Randy Gioia is the Deputy Chief Counsel of the Public Defender Division of the Committee for Public Counsel Services. He oversees the operation of public defender staff offices throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Prior to his appointment in 2012, he was the Attorney-in-Charge of the Roxbury Defenders Unit, a Superior Court public defender unit. He joined CPCS as a public defender 2010 after spending 33 years in private practice as a criminal defense attorney on both the federal and state level, including the trial of numerous first-degree murder cases.
In 2002 Randy received the Committee for Public Counsel Services Edward J. Duggan Award for “zealous advocacy and outstanding services to the poor.” In 2006, he was recognized by the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers for “tireless and courageous advocacy”.
Randy was one of the founders and original co-chairs of Suffolk Lawyers for Justice. He has served as co-chair of the Criminal Law Section of the Boston Bar Association, a director of the Massachusetts Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and an elected member of the Boston Bar Association Council. In 2009 he was a member of the Boston Bar Association Task Force on Wrongful Convictions. In 2017 he was a member of the Boston Bar Association Criminal Justice Reform Working Group. In 2018, Randy was a member of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Committee on Grand Jury Proceedings. From 2016 to 2018, he served as the National Legal Aid & Defender Association liaison to the American Bar Association Task Force on Discovery Standards. He was recently appointed to a two-year term of the American Bar Association Criminal Justice Standards Committee.
Randy is a graduate of Columbia University and Boston University School of Law.
Lisa Hewitt is the General Counsel for the Committee for Public Counsel Services (CPCS). Lisa also worked for CPCS as General Counsel and Legislative Counsel from 1986 to 1998.
Before joining CPCS in 1986, Lisa worked as the Chief of Staff for the Massachusetts House Committee on the Judiciary, as a research analyst for the Committee on Criminal Justice and as a staff member of the Special Commission on Uniform Sentencing and Revision of the Criminal Code.
Lisa left CPCS in 1998 to serve as the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys (MATA), and maintained a leadership role on behalf of MATA in coalitions with other consumer and civil justice bar associations. She also maintained a general law practice while representing clients in government affairs before state and municipal adjudicatory boards, and as a registered lobbyist she has lobbied for community organizations and citizens’ groups initiatives and funding. She has drafted and advocated for amendment to town ordinances, secured state and local funding for community projects, and managed the press in support of key community initiatives.
Lisa earned her B.A. from Stonehill College and her J.D. degree from Suffolk University Law School.
Debra S. Krupp, Director of Administration & Operations
With the Chief Counsel she is responsible for the management of day to day operations. In addition, Debra oversees the Training Department, was the Strategic Planning Project Manager, and continues to manage numerous other agency projects.
Debra began her career at CPCS as a trial attorney in Plymouth and Essex Counties, where she handled serious felony matters. Later, Debra joined what is now known as the Criminal Defense Training Unit, first as a staff attorney and later as the Training Director. Following a leave of absence, Debra returned to CPCS as a member of the CPCS Appeals Unit where she primarily represented defendants on direct appeal of criminal convictions.
In 2010, Debra became the first Director of the CPCS Innocence Program, establishing and overseeing a program to exonerate defendants who are actually innocent of the crimes of which they stand convicted. Debra became CPCS Training Coordinator in 2012, responsible for managing the allocation of training resources for all staff and private counsel, coordinating the delivery of training by the criminal, juvenile, children and family law and mental health practice areas, and collaborating with the CPCS Training Directors and others to produce long range strategic training plans and budgets. Debra joined the Senior Management Team in 2013.
Mark Larsen has been the Director of the Mental Health Litigation Division since 2012 after practicing for many years in New Hampshire. Over the years, he has handled a broad array of cases in the civil and criminal areas, including felonies, appeals, neglect and abuse, termination of parental rights, and civil commitments. Prior to coming to CPCS he worked as a managing attorney for the New Hampshire Public Defender and supervised the defense of civil commitments of allegedly sexually violent persons.
He has served in many committees and commissions including the Trial Court Task Force on Mental Illness and Substance and Substance Abuse, the Special Commission on Firearm Safety, the Section 35 Commission, the Boston Bar Association Ethics Committee, the Cross Cultural Committee of the Irish International Immigration Center and as Editor of the New Hampshire Bar Journal.
He is a graduate of Beloit College and the University of California – Hastings College of the Law. Over the years he has been admitted to practice in Massachusetts, California, New Hampshire and Vermont.
John Lozada, Equity and Inclusion Director
John Lozada is the Equity and Inclusion Director for the Committee for Public Counsel Services, and leads CPCS’ efforts to build fairness and respect within our offices and in our work to represent indigent individuals, across the broad range of cases we address. John brings to this work as strong ability to assess and respond to bias risks in both the work place and public settings, along with experience as counsel on discrimination matters and as a manager overseeing compliance activities across the range of civil rights issues in government and private settings.
As Director of Civil Rights and Manager of Federal Programs for the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) and the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA), John focused on issues relating to affirmative action//equal employment opportunities, nondiscrimination obligations toward the public, MWDBE contractor programs, and accessibility under Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Much of this work involved innovative efforts to bring technology solutions to build equity in efforts to prioritize issues of concern and remediation strategies.
As an attorney, Mr. Lozada has served in government and private capacities, focusing on civil rights in employment, education and transportation, as well as general civil law. He has blended his work focus with extensive volunteering across diverse organizations focused on civil rights, Bar diversity, community empowerment, education and health.
John is a graduate of the Northfield Mount Hermon School. Amherst College and the University of California – Hastings College of the Law, and likes to fish, ride bicycle, read and cook.
Kevin Lucchetti is the Chief Financial Officer. Prior to joining us at CPCS, Kevin served as the Director of Administration and Finance for the Massachusetts Department of Health, Bureau of Health Care Safety and Quality. Prior to that, he spent twelve years in the private sector as a Finance and Purchasing Director and a Senior Financial Analyst. He began his career in state government, first as a Budget Analyst for the House Ways and Means Committee and as a Senior Budget Analyst for the Massachusetts Water Resource Authority.
Kevin has a long history and strong background in financial management.
Daniel joined CPCS in September of 2014 after a career in technology consulting for non-profit, private, commercial, Federal and State clients, and as an IT director for private sector companies.
Before his technology career, Mr. Saroff co-founded a neuroscience research laboratory and spent over a decade in Alzheimer’s research.
He received a double Masters in Business Administration and Information Systems from Boston University. When not travelling, he spends some of his free time caring for a slightly spoiled, senior Labrador Retriever.
Vanessa Vélez oversees 80% of the state-wide legal representation of poor clients by private counsel in the following panels: Criminal Trial Support Unit, Criminal Appeals and Post-Conviction, and the Alternative Commitment and Registration Support Unit. She also oversees the Immigration Impact Unit, the Forensics Resources Unit, and the Private Social Work Services Unit.
Before her appointment as Deputy Chief Counsel, Attorney Vélez was the Attorney in Charge of the Boston District and Municipal Court Office, a public defenders division of CPCS. She worked in the public and private sectors litigating criminal and civil cases, as a member of the CPCS’ criminal appeals and post-conviction panel, and representing clients through the Volunteer Lawyer’s Program of the Boston Bar Association.
Attorney Vélez has actively participated in the Homeless Court Project (HCP) and the Boston Veterans Treatment Court (BVTC). She has been a faculty member in the Trial Advocacy Workshop of Harvard Law School and mentored 12th-grade students from the Chelsea High School through the Pathways Mentorship Program. She also mentored law students with the Boston Lawyers Group (BLG).