Skip Navigation

Interdisciplinary Conference on Human Trafficking

U.S. Government Panel Participants

The purpose of this panel (session 2) is to give government agencies the opportunity to inform researchers and anti-trafficking workers of their work, their agendas, and what they are prepared to fund. The five panel members are all experienced in anti-trafficking work or research, and we expect a lively discussion of their work and their needs for knowledge.


Linda K. Daniels

Linda K. Daniels

Linda K. Daniels retired from Army in November 2006. She immediately started her civil service career and as an Intergovernmental Affairs Officer within the Defense Human Resources Activity, and Law Enforcement Policy Support. She is the Program Manager for implementing the Department of Defense's program to combat Trafficking in Persons (TIP).

Ms. Daniels is currently developing training modules that are based on realistic, military-related TIP scenarios. She is working with all the military services in establishing a metric for tracking TIP awareness training and understanding of TIP related policy and programs. She is working with Joint Stagg, and the services to include TIP training in Joint and Service institutional training curriculum, at all levels, for both officers and enlisted Service Members and to include TIP in DoD post conflict, humanitarian aid, and Peacekeeping and Stability Operations.

Ms. Daniels' last duty assignment within the military was with the Department of Defense Office of the Inspector General (IG) as a Senior Program Analyst within the Inspections and Evaluations Directorate. During her tenure as the IG, Ms. Daniels assisted DoD within initiatives to combat trafficking. She led an IG team on a worldwide evaluation of the DoD efforts to combat trafficking. The team made several recommendations in the areas of coordination, training, policy and metrics.

Amy O'Neill Richard

Amy O'Neill Richard

Amy O'Neill Richard is a Senior Advisor to the Director in the State Department's Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (TIP). She develops counter trafficking strategies, including the development of public and private partnerships. She also serves as Co-Chair of the USG Interagency Committee on Human Trafficking Research.

Previously, Ms. Richard worked as the Senior Coordinator for State Department Reports where she oversaw the Department's Annual TIP Report. Her own research work has earned her several honor awards, including the State Department's Swanee Hunt Award for Advancing Women's Role in Policy Formulation and the Department's Warren Christopher Award for Outstanding Achievement in Global Affairs for her report "International Trafficking in Women to the United States: A Contemporary Manifestation of Slavery and Organized Crime". Formerly, Ms. Richard worked in the Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research, where she received the Analyst of the Year Award, for shedding new light on transnational organized crime.

John T. Picarelli

John T. Picarelli is a social science analyst for the International Center of the National Institute of Justice. Dr. Picarelli's expertise lies in the intersection of international affairs and homeland security, with a particular emphasis on issues related to organized crime, human trafficking, terrorism, arms proliferation and gangs.

At NIJ, he is responsible for promoting international research and locating international programs and policies that benefit US criminal justice agencies. Dr. Picarelli has published extensively on the topics of organized crime, terrorism, cybercrime and human trafficking, with over two dozen journal articles and book chapters. He received his PhD in international relations from the American University in 2007, his MA from the University of Pittsburgh in 1997 and his BA from the University of Delaware in 1994. He is a member of the faculty at American University and George Washington University.

Heath Simon

In April 2010, Heath Simon was named as the Director of the Human Smuggling and Trafficking Center in Washington, DC.

Mr. Simon began his career in Federal law enforcement as an Immigration Examiner in Boston, Massachusetts in 1994. In 1995, he became a Special Agent serving in the Immigration and Naturalization Service's (INS) Boston District Office before transferring to the INS Washington District Office in 2002. During his eight years in Boston and five years in Washington, Mr. Simon conducted criminal investigations involving alien smuggling, human trafficking, immigration benefit and document fraud, organized crime, and criminal gangs.

Since 2006, Mr. Simon has been at ICE Headquarters in a variety of positions including in the ICE Office of Detention and Removal Operations, responsible for overseeing removal operations covering Central and South America, and in the ICE Office of Intelligence where he was responsible for the Secure Communities Intelligence Program.

Mr. Simon holds a Master's Degree in Criminology from Florida State University and a Bachelor's Degree in Business and Accounting from Wake Forest University.

Veronica Zeitlin

Veronica Zeitlin manages the human trafficking portfolio in the Office of Women in Development at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). Previously, she worked at the State Department's Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking, where she covered West and Central Africa on the annual Trafficking in Persons Report. While at the State Department, Ms. Zeitlin made 24 visits to 18 sub-Saharan African countries to assess the scope and nature of trafficking and evaluate government efforts to address it. Prior to State, Ms. Zeitlin managed women's political participation projects at the National Democratic Institute and was a consultant on human trafficking and broader human rights issues for UNICEF, USAID, and Refugees International. She has lived and worked in Senegal , Nigeria , and Togo . Ms. Zeitlin has practiced law in New York and holds a B.A. in Anthropology from Columbia University and a J.D. from the University of Virginia.