South King County Domestic Abuse Women’s Network new executive director

Margaret “Peg” Coleman will be Domestic Abuse Women’s Network
Margaret “Peg” Coleman will be Domestic Abuse Women’s Network's new executive director beginning Jan. 27, 2014.
— image credit: Contributed

Domestic Abuse Women’s Network (DAWN) announced that Margaret “Peg” Coleman, former executive director of the Utah Domestic Violence Coalition (UDVC), will be DAWN’s new executive director beginning Jan. 27, 2014.

New Jersey-raised Coleman has 35 years of frontline experience in the field. Most recently, she assumed leadership of UDVC in April 2012, following nine years of leading a domestic violence and sexual assault shelter in Homer, Alaska.

“Peg’s experience working on domestic violence, substance abuse, mental illness and homelessness, coupled with more than 20 years of leadership experience in mission-driven non-profit organizations, is a perfect fit for DAWN,” says board president Gary Ernsdorff. “We’re delighted to have Peg join the organization.”

DAWN’s Executive Director Search Committee conducted a nationwide search, with the goal of finding an executive director who brings a deep understanding of domestic violence, excellent leadership skills, strong operational orientation, experience guiding organizations through change, and experience with complex and dynamic funding streams.

“In Peg, we found a person who brought all the capabilities needed for this point in DAWN’s evolution,” Ernsdorff said. “Her collaborative and inclusive leadership style, creative problem solving and client compassion will be an asset to DAWN.”

Coleman also held positions in Maine at Family Crisis Services, Goodwill Industries, Maine Medical Center, city of Portland and state of Maine. She holds a bachelor’s degree in human services from Thomas Edison State College.

“I’m excited to be joining the organization,” Coleman said. “DAWN’s empowerment-based philosophy is aligned to my personal beliefs about how domestic violence services are best delivered. What is especially thrilling is to be involved with DAWN as it evolves its programs and services to focus more on community collaboration and prevention. Meeting the needs of clients earlier in the process eventually achieves the long-term goal of ending domestic violence.”

“In addition, Washington state is on the cutting edge of aligning domestic violence programs with the social justice movement, and many local organizations in the state have been open to changing how best to serve survivors,” Coleman added. “There’s a tremendous amount of integrity in the work across this state, and DAWN plays a key part in reinforcing that positive reputation across the country.”

Coleman will have some transition time with Robbie Rohr, who served as the interim executive director for the last six months.

About DAWN

DAWN’s mission is to lead and support efforts in south King County communities to end domestic violence. Since 1980, more than 375,000 people have found safety and new violence-free beginnings with the help of the continuum of community based resources offered by DAWN. DAWN is the primary provider of free services, including emergency confidential shelter and 24-hour Advocacy & Crisis Line, to domestic violence victims in south King County. For information, visit


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