Maine Justice Foundation's Staff
Michelle Giard Draeger, Executive Director
Michelle is responsible for overall management of MJF in order to maximize resources that support access to civil justice, including legal aid, pro bono legal services, and related law education.
Michelle Giard Draeger became the fifth Executive Director of the Foundation in May, 2020. A native of Maine, Ms. Draeger graduated from the University of Maine, School of Law. She began her legal career as a staff attorney at Pine Tree Legal Services, focusing on cases involving domestic violence. Ms. Draeger then entered private practice at a litigation firm in Portland before moving to Washington, DC to join the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Enforcement where she worked for two years and then in the Commission’s Boston office for six years as a Senior Enforcement Counsel. Upon Ms. Draeger's return to Maine with her family, she served as an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Maine and later as an in-house counsel and compliance professional for a large healthcare entity.
Ms. Draeger has served on the Board of Trustees of the Falmouth Land Trust and has also served as Vice President and Chair of the Development Committee. Ms. Draeger was a member of the inaugural class of the New Girls Network and later served on the boards of the Maine Women’s Fund and the Maine Humanities Council.
Ms. Draeger is delighted to live, work and raise her two daughters in her native state of Maine with her husband, Scot and their best pal, Maple, their Vizsla.
Mathew Scease, Development Director
Matt works closely with the Executive Director and Board of Directors to design and conduct a multifaceted development program to help shrink the chasm between the need for civil legal aid for poor and vulnerable Mainers and the insufficient resources available to address this urgent need.
Matt leads the foundation’s fundraising efforts, seeking annual support for our mission, as well as planned gifts and major gifts for endowed funds. He also helps develop the foundation’s communications.
Matt has sixteen years of experience as a development professional, most recently as Associate Director of Philanthropy at the Natural Resources Council of Maine. He formerly worked at Friends of Casco Bay in South Portland as Director of Development and as an organizer with the Sierra Club. He graduated with honors from Cheverus High School in Portland and magna cum laude from Bowdoin College, with a degree in Philosophy. He is a native of Augusta.
Matt serves on the board of the Vaughan Woods and Historic Homestead in Hallowell. He lives in Hallowell with his family.
Angela Stinchfield, Associate Development Director
Angela supports the fundraising efforts of Maine Justice Foundation and the Campaign for Justice. She seeks to augment the experience of MJF’s fundraising team and grow annual fund goals. Angela is an experienced development professional with a background in higher education: her most recent experience was working on the Colby Fund as part of Colby College’s $756 million dollar Dare Northward campaign.
Angela is originally from Downeast Maine, graduating from Ellsworth High School and later earning a BS and MBA from Thomas College in Waterville, Maine. She lives in Vassalboro with her teenage daughter and three rescue animals.
In her free time Angela spends most her time reading, working out, boating and hiking with her partner, Wayne.
Joan N. Gilbert, Finance and Administration Manager
Joan performs accounting duties. She also serves as human resources coordinator and utility infielder addressing wide-ranging office needs. In consultation with the Executive Director, Joan oversees Maine’s Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts Program, Coffin Family Law Fellowship Program, Loan Repayment Assistance Program, and more.
Joan has worked for MJF since 2004. Previously, she provided executive/administrative support for a number of statewide associations – Maine Petroleum Association, Maine Trial Lawyers Association, Maine Association of Broadcasters and Associated General Contractors of Maine. In 1993, she worked as a senate stenographer at the Legislature.
In her spare time, Joan is an avid gardener and thoroughly enjoys riding her Harley-Davidson motorcycle.
Sherri Minoty, Administrative and Development Assistant
Sherri provides administrative support to the Foundation and its development efforts. She is responsible for maintaining Maine’s Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Accounts (IOLTA) program database. She also serves as MJF’s receptionist.
Sherri is responsible for gift processing for the annual Campaign for Justice and maintains its donor database. She also provides administrative support to the Maine Civil Legal Services Fund Commission.
Prior to joining the Foundation in 2001, her background included working many years in the field of Customer Relations. She is married with two children and enjoys photography, camping, and traveling.