ChicagoCAC’s team members work collaboratively to investigate abuse and help children and families heal from the trauma of abuse.
Our team includes intake coordinators, family advocates, forensic interviewers, mental health therapists, trainers and more.
Char Rivette, MSW, LCSW
Char Rivette has served as Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center’s Executive Director since 2009. In addition to overseeing the operations of the not-for-profit entity, she facilitates the Multidisciplinary Leadership Team housed at ChicagoCAC, which includes members of Chicago Police Department, Department of Children & Family Services, Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office and Cook County Health. During her tenure, the organization has grown by more than 50 percent and expanded its building by 75 percent, allowing for expanded investigative services and support, mental health services, outreach and prevention, and collaborative partnerships.
Ms. Rivette is currently a member and past Chair of the Illinois Children’s Justice Task Force, and she is on the board of Changing Children’s Worlds, a not-for-profit organization focusing on strengthening parenting to prevent abuse. In addition, she is active on the statewide and national levels in collaborating with other leaders within the children’s advocacy center movement to advance the cause and increase the positive impact of their work.
Ms. Rivette holds more than 25 years of experience in the field of child abuse and mental health, beginning her work in direct clinical services to abused and traumatized children. Prior to her arrival at ChicagoCAC, she served as Chief of Program Operations at Little City Foundation.
She also held positions at Our Children’s Homestead and DuPage County Health Department. Ms. Rivette earned a master’s degree in social work from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and is a licensed clinical social worker.
Soo Choi, JD
Chief Human Resources Officer
Soo Choi ensures that the children and families served at ChicagoCAC receive the best possible services through the oversight and implementation of consistent, streamlined human resource (HR) processes and talent activities for individual employees, managers and the agency. She also leads the agency’s workplace culture, diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives. Prior to joining ChicagoCAC, Ms. Choi was the Commissioner of the Department of Human Resources for the City of Chicago, where she led its HR operations for nine years. She has also served as a Deputy Inspector General in the City of Chicago’s Inspector General’s Office, where she created and led its Hiring Oversight Section, which is responsible for monitoring the City’s hiring and employment practices. Ms. Choi received her Juris Doctorate from Cornell Law School, her Master of Arts in the Humanities from the University of Chicago, and her undergraduate degree in English from Duke University.
Christin Kruse, MBA
Chief Development and Marketing Officer
Christin Kruse manages all facets of fund development for ChicagoCAC, including government affairs, foundation relations, individual giving, and special events. She also oversees marketing and communications. She joined the leadership team in 2020, bringing more than 15 years of experience in building strategic partnerships to advance health and human services and arts organizations. Prior to joining ChicagoCAC, Ms. Kruse was Associate Vice President for Advancement & Behavioral Health Operations at AMITA Health GlenOaks Hospital. She has also held executive-level development positions with Pioneer Center for Human Services, Raue Center for the Arts, and Lakeside Legacy Foundation. Her expertise includes change management, process improvement, and building collaborative, high-performing teams. Ms. Kruse received her BA in Psychology from Columbia College of Missouri and her MBA from Aurora University. Christin is a member of American Fundraising Professionals and process improvement, Six Sigma Lean Green Belt Certified (LGBC).
Michelle Y. Swenson, CPA
Chief Financial and Operation Officer
Michelle Swenson supervises the accounting staff and manages cash flow, financial reporting for grants/contracts, and monthly financial reporting. In addition, she oversees the organization’s annual audit and prepares quarterly financial projections for board meetings. She works closely with fund development and programmatic staff to ensure that the organization’s current and future financial needs are met. Before joining ChicagoCAC, Ms. Swenson was a senior member of the audit department at Ostrow Reisin Berk & Abrams, Ltd., where she provided accounting, auditing, and tax services to individuals, privately-held businesses and non-profits. Ms. Swenson holds degrees in accounting and political science from Augustana College and is a licensed certified public accountant and a member of the Illinois CPA Society.
Jan Waters, MS, LCPC, Doctoral Candidate
Chief Program Officer, Clinical Services
Jan Waters manages the center’s mental health services and the PATHH collaboration. She has more than 18 years of clinical and managerial experience working with children and adults who have experienced abuse and other types of trauma, with a subspecialty in working with individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. She has extensive training and experience providing clinical interventions to children and adults who have experienced child sexual abuse and sexual assault. Prior to working at ChicagoCAC, Ms. Waters managed the community mental health programs for the Canadian Mental Health Association Kawartha Lakes Branch and served as the director of clinical services for Little City Foundation. Ms. Waters has presented and offered trainings internationally on topics such as developmental psychotherapy, trauma, autism, and mindfulness. She is a licensed clinical professional counselor in Illinois, holds a master’s in counseling psychology from Benedictine University, and is a doctoral candidate in international psychology at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology.
Jason Wynkoop, LCSW
Chief Program Officer, Advocacy and Investigative Services
Jason Wynkoop leads Advocacy and Investigative Services at the center and is responsible for supporting the intake, forensic interview, advocacy, and child life teams. He has been a licensed clinical social worker and supervisor for over 15 years. His professional focus has been on children, youth, and families and includes work in community mental health, residential treatment, and policy and funding. For more than ten years, Mr. Wynkoop has been a coordinator and director of programs including outreach services and a residential mental health support program for college students. Immediately prior to joining ChicagoCAC, he served as a Strategic Policy Advisor at the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority. His portfolio at ICJIA included trauma recovery centers and VOCA-funded initiatives like Illinois HEALS, a statewide demonstration project to improve service accessibility and engagement for children and youth impacted by violence. Mr. Wynkoop is a graduate of Valparaiso University, earned a master’s in social service administration from the University of Chicago, and is an alumnus of the Allstate Foundation’s Executive Leadership Program.