Our Staff

Ann Crews Melton

Ann Crews Melton is a facilitative leader, nonprofit strategist, and consensus builder. She joined Consensus Council as executive director in 2020. Ann first used the consensus model of decision-making as co-moderator of the National Network of Presbyterian College Women. Her career has prioritized ecumenical and interfaith relations, including roles at the Presbyterian Church (USA) and Temple Israel Boston. She remains committed to dialogue across differences, as well as to the transformative power of the arts and humanities. Ann previously served as an editor at the State Historical Society of North Dakota and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York City, and as religion reporter at the Bismarck Tribune.

A Texas native, Ann holds a bachelor’s degree from Austin College and a master’s degree from Emerson College in Boston. She presented “Building Consensus Across Differences” at TEDxAustinCollege in 2021.

Ann serves as treasurer of Heart River Lutheran Church, an ELCA congregation that meets at the ND Heart River Correctional Center. She is a former board officer of Humanities North Dakota and a strong proponent of civic engagement, civil discourse, and participatory decision-making. She lives in Bismarck with her husband and two daughters.

701.224.0588 ext 1


Elizabeth Hilt


Elizabeth “Elle” Hilt is a devoted advocate for Restorative Justice and values-based crucial conversations. For 16 years, her academic and professional efforts have focused on creating spaces for difficult discussions.

Elizabeth obtained a master’s degree from St. Cloud State University (MN) centered on using restorative practices to address criminal harms, and most of her work has served justice-involved individuals. However, in supporting people engaged in conflict, she has found that any opportunity to build empathy and engage in healthy dialogue is vital to creating stronger relationships and safer communities in the face of adversity.

Since 2018, Elizabeth has proudly led North Dakota’s statewide Restorative Justice program in partnership with the North Dakota Juvenile Court system and the ND Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation. She believes that restorative practices are important strategies to engage people in building and repairing relationships and community, and to provide people who have experienced harm a meaningful voice in the justice process.

701.224.0588 ext 4


Karla Buzick


Karla joined Consensus Council in January 2013. She has a degree in Information Processing from Bismarck State College and is MOS certified in Microsoft Word, Excel and Powerpoint.

Karla is a 2011 graduate of the Bismarck-Mandan Leadership Program. She has been involved with a number of nonprofits over the years, including Dakota OutRight from 2011-2017, the North Dakota Human Rights Coalition from 2011-2017, and the Bismarck Human Relations Committee from 2011-2012. She was a grant reviewer with the PFund Social Change grant committee and also has been a member of the statewide LGBTQ+ Advisory Committee through the ND Department of Health & the ND Women’s Network.

701.224.0588 ext 3


Caitlin McDonald


Caitlin joined Consensus Council as the newly minted Communications Manager in 2022. She previously spent five years union organizing with North Dakota United, the state’s union for public employees and educators. Before her time at NDU, she worked with a variety of nonprofits, including the ND Women’s Network and the Abused Adult Resource Center.

Aside from work, Caitlin enjoys music and art, both as a performer and as an audience member, and she loves laughing and making others laugh. But most of all, whether it’s at work or at play, she loves connecting with people as they are, and building authentic connections. Caitlin lives in Bismarck with her partner, Andy.

701.224.0588 ext 5


Sonia Ostlund


Sonia has a diverse professional background, having worked as a surgical technologist in both obstetrics/gynecology and oral surgery before transitioning to a career in Restorative Justice in 2020. Beginning as a program assistant, Sonia quickly developed a passion for the principles and practices of the program. Motivated by the profound meaning behind the work, she became a leader and today serves as the Program Coordinator, supervising the remote facilitator team.

701.224.0588 ext 2


Logan Ellingson


Logan joined Consensus Council’s Restorative Justice team in May 2022. Logan has been working with at-risk youth communities since 2012, and worked for the public school system aiding children with special needs in the Fargo area for many years. Logan lives in Fargo and spends much of his spare time training dogs and horses.

701.799.3795 (mobile)


sandra banezerwe

Restorative practices specialist 

Sandra was born in Democratic Republic of Congo, and she loves learning and improving herself.  While in the position of Restorative Practices Specialist in Consensus Council she hopes to impart a part of herself into the restorative justice work, by changing the school culture and narrative regarding accountability, and building relationships by facilitating conflict resolution.



701.400.9713 (mobile)


Leah Carmical Hargrove


Leah was born and raised in North Carolina, where she majored in International Studies and French at the University of North Carolina–Asheville. She moved to North Dakota with her husband in 2012, and they have three Dakota-born children. Leah founded Global Neighbors in 2015 and served as executive director for six years. Leah was chosen as the City of Bismarck’s Humanitarian of the Year for 2018, is a Change Network alumna, and a former Hello Neighbor Fellow. She is passionate about communities, productive conversations, and social growth that benefits the entire ecosystem.

901.374.7255 (mobile)


Lynette Galow



Sarah Prom



Mark Tobin



Peggy Weber



125 Slate Drive, Suite 6
Bismarck, ND 58503

(701) 224-0588


Consensus Council