Celebrating My 25th Episode of Vibin’ With Tonza: A Conversation With An Attorney Who Joined In The Fight To Abolish The Death Penalty

I believe the death penalty should be abolished throughout our country. State-mandated killing is barbaric. So, how appropriate and exciting is it that my 25th episode of Vibin’ With Tonza would be a conversation with Madhu Swarna.

Madhu is a staff attorney at The Center for Death Penalty Litigation(CDPL). CDPL is a non-profit law firm composed of a dedicated team of people that not only represent people on death row. They also coordinate capital litigation across North Carolina and serve as a “clearinghouse for accurate and timely information on the N.C. death penalty”.

Madhu joined the team at CDPL in 2019 after graduating from New York University School of Law. As an attorney who has been practicing law for twenty years, I am always excited to see new attorneys join the ranks in the fight against injustice across our country. Take a moment to check out my conversation with Madhu. You will not be disappointed.

Vibin' With Megan Johnson and Celisa Lehew, Chapel Hill Police Department Crisis Unit Vibin' with Tonza

Celisa Lehew, Assistant Chief of Police with the Chapel Hill Police Department, currently leads the Uniformed Patrol Division, Investigations, and School Resource Officers.  Having started her career as a Patrol Officer in 2004, she has previously led the Training Division, Crisis Unit, Quartermaster, Information Services, and Budget Operations. Celisa holds a Master’s Degree in Justice Administration from Methodist University and a Bachelor’s Degree from Lake Superior State University. Celisa is passionate for her community currently serving as a board member for Our Children’s Place of Coastal Horizons Center and Dispute Settlement Center; as well as the Town’s staff liaison for the Justice in Action Committee. She is a member of the North Carolina Police Executives Association, FBI Law Enforcement Executive Development Association, and Alpha Pi Sigma. Celisa was recently named a 2019 Woman of Achievement by Chapel Hill Magazine. Celisa is a sought-after speaker and teacher on community policing, ethics, leadership and investigations.  A born and raised Canadian, fluent in French, she is an outdoors enthusiast and Toronto Maple Leafs hockey fan. Celisa is a mother to two daughters, with a husband who also serves in law enforcement.  Megan Johnson, LCMHC serves as a civilian Division Commander for the Chapel Hill Police Department managing the Crisis Unit, a 24-hour co-response team that provides onsite emergency response with officers to persons in crisis situations of which may include intimate partner or sexual violence, persons experiencing psychiatric emergencies or persistent mental health concerns, situations requiring safety planning and lethality assessments, and incidents involving serious injury or death. In this role, she provides clinical oversight of the Police Peer Support Team which provides confidential emotional support to first responders under a peer-to-peer model.  Megan serves as the Coordinator for the Department’s Crisis Negotiation Team which is deployed during critical incidents that require specific engagement with suicidal persons, barricaded subjects, and hostage situations. She also oversees the administration of the Town of Chapel Hill’s Criminal Justice Debt Program which provides criminal justice related debt relief to indigent members of the community. Prior to joining the Crisis Unit, Megan worked as an Emergency Services Clinician for the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) Assessment Center, an extension of Colonial Behavioral Health's Emergency Services Unit in Williamsburg, Virginia, where she provided assessment and intervention services in community, correctional, and hospital settings to adults, children and families in crisis situations. Her specific clinical interest areas are Cluster B Personality Disorders, suicidality, and self-mutilation. Megan holds a Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from the College of William and Mary and is a Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor in North Carolina. In addition to subscribing to Vibin' With Tonza, please be sure to go to http://www.tonzadruffin.com and subscribe so that you can receive my blog in your inbox as soon as they are published.    
  1. Vibin' With Megan Johnson and Celisa Lehew, Chapel Hill Police Department Crisis Unit
  2. Vibin' With Madhu Swarna, Staff Attorney at The Center For Death Penalty Litigation
  3. Vibin' With Whitley Grant, Licensed Mental Health Counselor and Clinical Addiction Specialist
  4. Vibin' With Brittney Cherry, Contoured Seven Founder
  5. Vibin' With Will Wildfire

Much Love,


P.S. You can find Vibin’ With Tonza on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, Castro, IHeart Radio, Podchaser, Podcast Addict, Deezer, Listen Notes, Pocket Cast, and Castro! Please take a moment to subscribe today! Thank you!

Author: Tonza D. Ruffin

Perfectly Imperfect but VERY PROUD WOMAN, MOM, LAWYER, and AUTHOR, but most importantly...LIFE LOVER! I laugh loud, I work hard, I play hard, I am adventurous, I am curious, I am driven, I have moments of deep insecurity, I am loving, I am vulnerable, I am explosive (not one of my finer qualities), I dance around my house alone, I am an awful perfectionist which makes my insecurity worse, I sing out loud in my car without any concern for whose watching, I have trust issues, I do not live through my children, I no longer try to force my children into the mold that I created so that I could feel validated as a mother, I am a risk-taker, I am guarded in my personal life, I am kind, I am grateful. I am so excited about the rest of my life!

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