Youth Advisory Council
The Youth Advisory Council is a group of like-minded individuals under the age of 25 who meet on a consistent basis to share resources and advise The Shaken Baby Alliance on ways to better support and encourage youth to get involved in the mission. They share a common goal of increasing knowledge, awareness of, and preventing Shaken Baby Syndrome and other forms of child physical abuse.
If you are under the age of 25 and would like to join our Youth Advisory Council, click here.
The Shaken Baby Alliance is proud to present the members of our Youth Advisory Council:
Ann Baldwin – Adult Chair
Adult Leader for Youth Advisory Council
Ann Baldwin retired after a 44-year career as a high school educator. She is a proud graduate of the University of Texas at Austin with degrees in Political Science and History. Her last teaching assignment was at All Saints’ Episcopal School where she served as a faculty member and History Department Chair for 19 years. As a veteran government teacher, Ann’s teachable moments included taking seniors to the last three presidential inaugurations and to Austin to serve as pages in both the Texas House and Senate. She has always believed in the philosophy of learning by doing. She encouraged students to expand their world view by taking them to tour the Tarrant County Jail, arranging lunch meetings with the Tarrant County District Attorney, and sponsoring student trips to Denali National Park in Alaska.
Ann received many honors and accolades including as a nominee for the Texas Excellence Award for Outstanding High School Teacher by the Ex-Students Association of the University of Texas at Austin and the inaugural participant in a teacher exchange with Barker College, Sydney Australia.
Ann has traveled extensively and hopes to continue exploring and learning in the years to come. Her love of children brings her to The Shaken Baby Alliance where she works tirelessly to support our mission and she serves as the Adult Leader of the Youth Advisory Council and passes on her wealth of wisdom to these outstanding young leaders of our community.
Susan Bragg, M.A.
Adult Leader for Youth Advisory Council
Susan Bragg has more than 35 years of experience as an advocate working with victims of violence in North Texas. Ms. Bragg specializes in law enforcement training (e.g., death notification, family violence, trauma, and victims’ rights), counseling special victim populations, and all areas of grant management. As an adjunct professor, she has taught classes in Criminal Justice and Psychology at both university and community college levels.
The Texas Governor’s Office, the Texas Attorney General’s Office, and the MADD National organization have recognized her for exemplary victim programs. Susan created Lawyers Against Domestic Violence, an award-winning pro bono group of family attorneys who assist battered women with their legal needs. Ms. Bragg earned a master’s degree in Psychology from Texas Woman’s University and a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Christopher Newport University in Virginia. She is also a Certified Law Enforcement Planner from the International Association of Law Enforcement Planners.
Susan is Vice-Chair of the Advisory Council for The Shaken Baby Alliance, Co-Leads the Victim Family Peer Support Group, is an Adult Leader for the Youth Advisory Council, and is the Sponsor Committee Chair for the We Love Kids Telethon.
Mavourneen Carr – YAC - Co Chair,
Texas Christian University
Mavourneen Carr is a junior at Texas Christian University from Alexandria, Virginia, close to Washington, D.C. She stays very busy with a prelaw track that includes a double major of Criminal justice and philosophy.
In addition to her internship, she is involved in leadership roles with many organizations on campus including president of her sorority. After graduation, she plans to attend law school and become a child advocate or a juvenile defense attorney. She is excited to be able to spend this semester learning more about how we as individuals and as a society can better protect and provide for children, family, and the elderly.
Mavourneen was instrumental in the development of the Youth Advisory Council for The Shaken Baby Alliance and is actively involved in the growth of this very important council that impacts youth and makes our community safer for children.
Detective Melinda Clark
Tarrant County Sheriff’s Office
Detective Melinda Clark attended Tarrant County College and earned an Associate Degree in Arts and Science. Detective Clark then completed the Tarrant County College Police Academy where she graduated in 2008. Detective Clark began her law enforcement career with the Alvarado Police Department where she worked in the Patrol Division. Detective Clark took the roll of the Community Resource Officer in 2010 and coordinated their National Night Out Program before leaving.
In 2011, Detective Clark began working at the Tarrant County Sheriff’s Office where she was assigned to the Patrol Division and then promoted to Detective in the Criminal Investigations Division. Her investigations include crimes against children, adult sexual assaults, homicides, and jail investigations. In 2017, Detective Clark received a Medal of Merit for her hard work and dedication and many Letters of Appreciation for her outstanding professionalism and compassion. During her time in law enforcement, Detective Clark has obtained her Master’s Peace Officer License, Instructor’s License and often teaches about child abuse to law enforcement and other multi-disciplinary team members. Detective Clark is an active member of the law enforcement community and participated in the Tarrant County District Attorney’s Sexual Assault Work Group that assisted in setting up required documentation, procedures, and standard protocols which is used by most of the Tarrant County law enforcement agencies.
Detective Clark is a tireless advocate for children which shows by her serving on The Shaken Baby Alliance Advisory Council. Detective Clark is also an Adult Leader for the Youth Advisory Council, she is a member of the Tarrant County Sexual Assault Response Team headed by JPS and is a member of the Case Consultation Services Team where she uses her many skills to provide technical support for investigators and legal professionals.
Avery Kral – YAC – Co Chair
Texas Christian University
Avery Karal is a Senior at Texas Christian University pursuing a degree in Psychology with a double minor in criminal justice and writing. Avery is a California native, but her family recently made the move to Texas, so she is very excited to officially call herself a Texan.
Avery discovered her passion for helping others in high school through her extensive volunteer work in a group called National Charity League. Avery spent the summer of 2019 shadowing a physician at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles which is where her passion narrowed, and she found a love for helping children. Her goddaughters Odette (6) and Olivia (7) continue to inspire her in her work through daily facetime calls and visits when possible.
Avery served as a Founding Member of the Youth Advisory Council for The Shaken Baby Alliance where her leadership and organizational skills, and concern to make the community safer for children, impacted this very important group as policies were developed to guide future members. Avery continues to spread awareness about Shaken Baby Syndrome and provide prevention education to protect children. After graduation, Avery will pursue a career in Forensic Psychology. In her free time, she can be found spending time with friends, family, and her recently adopted puppy named Stella.
Texas Christian University
Colton Martin is a senior at Texas Christian University. Until the age of thirteen he lived in Arlington, Texas and later moved away to pursue a hockey career. After years of practice and hard work he turned that effort into a short stint in professional hockey.
Colton’s passion for hockey combined with his passion to provide leadership for youth in our community and he now coaches 15-year-old hockey players for a youth organization in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex area while completing his degree in Criminal Justice. Teaching these young men about hockey, sportsmanship, and to be a good role model is the highlight of his day.
Colton is a father to his beautiful toddler daughter, Payton. As a first time Dad, he knows firsthand how challenging it can be to raise a child. Colton chose to be a Volunteer Intern and involved in the development of the Youth Advisory Council for The Shaken Baby Alliance because of his commitment to Payton and a desire to keep all children safe. Colton uses his experiences as a father to provide education and act as a sounding board to fathers involved in our When Babies Cry…We C.O.P.E. educational programming.
Rob Smat – YAC - Volunteer
Rob Smat is a writer/director native to Texas and local to the American Southwest. His debut feature The Last Whistle (Vertical Ent., 2019) debuted in theaters, Walmart DVD’s, and Netflix to solid reviews from Variety, et al. Rob spoke at the start of 2020 for the American Heart Association, who was closely involved in production of the film to raise awareness of sudden cardiac arrest in athletes.
Rob has been awarded as a finalist for the Blacklist’s Collyer grant, a finalist for BET’s Project CRE8, and a quarterfinalist for the Austin Film Fest screenwriting competition. He is a graduate of the directing and screenwriting programs at the University of Southern California and is developing a hybrid production company with a slate of COVID-safe productions.
Rob spends his time writing screenplays and fundraising for his upcoming documentary about Walmart’s employee walkout. He also plans to write a book about the tornado that hit downtown Fort Worth in 2000, just in time for the 25th anniversary of this tragedy.
Rob utilized his talents of planning, guiding, and directing to provide leadership in the development of The Shaken Baby Alliance Youth Advisory Council and continues today as an Adult Leader. Rob understands the importance of communicating the mission of The Shaken Baby Alliance and developed videos so we can communicate our mission of SUPPORT for victim families and professionals, PREVENTION of child and elder abuse, and JUSTICE for the innocent victims.