Board of Directors

Meet Catholic Mobilizing Network’s Board of Directors. This dynamic group brings a wealth of experience and passion to the organization. Each member brings gifts to our ministry and mission of ending the use of the death penalty and promoting restorative justice.



Mary J. Novak, J.D., M.A.P.S., has as served across the U.S. and abroad as an attorney, educator, peacebuilder, spiritual and retreat director as well as chaplain.  Prior to moving into full-time ministry, Mary practiced and taught law for over ten years in California during which time she was part of a team of lawyers representing a man on the largest death row in the United States.  Mary has served organizations in their development for mission for decades and holds an M.A. in Pastoral Studies from the Washington Theological Union, a J.D. from Santa Clara University Law School and a B.S. in Management from San Diego State University.  She has done advanced study in spirituality and peacebuilding/restorative justice.  Mary currently serves as Associate Director for Ignatian Formation at Georgetown University Law Center.



Vice Chair 

Kathleen Brown, M.A., M.A., serves as the Regional Coordinator for Caritas North America of Caritas Internationalis. She serves on the steering committee of the Catholic Climate Covenant.  During her 40-year career Church ministry, Kathy served for eight years as the Senior Director for Mission and Catholic Identity at Catholic Charities USA and for nine years, she was the Director of Community Engagement at the global headquarters of Catholic Relief Services where she also served as the Director of Engagement. In her capacity as the Director of Institutes for the North American Forum on the Catechumenate, she traveled extensively in the United States, Canada and France leading workshops, presentations and trainings for church leadership. 
Originally from the Diocese of Phoenix, Arizona, Kathy served as the Dean of the School of Theological Studies at the Kino Institute, the Director of the Office of Peace and Justice, a pastoral associate and director of adult education. In Arizona Kathy was a leader in community organizing for over ten years, served on the City of Phoenix Housing Commission and the Governor’s Task Force on Hunger. She was also the president of Sunnyslope Revitalization Board, a Community Development Corporation. She has a Sacrae Theologiae Baccalaureatus (STB) and a Master of Arts in Theology from St. Paul University and the University of Ottawa in Ottawa Canada. She has published numerous articles and co-authored a book on Christian Initiation; she is an international speaker on initiation, social justice, catechetics and liturgy.




Marianne Race, CSJ is a member of CMN’s sponsor, the Congregation of St. Joseph. Her ministry has consistently been in education beginning with elementary and high school and currently in Adult Spiritual Education. She is the author of In This Place: Reflections on the Land of the Gospels for the Liturgical Cycle and is a contributor to liturgical and biblical publications. For the past 26 years she has led retreats in the Holy Land and continues her education ministry through Scripture Study in parishes.


Episcopal Advisor

Most Reverend Daniel Flores was ordained for the Diocese of Corpus Christi in January 1988. He served as Auxiliary Bishop for the Archdiocese of Detroit before being installed as the Sixth Bishop of Brownsville in 2010. Bishop Flores serves the USCCB as Chairman of the Committee on Cultural Diversity in the Church. He also serves on the Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty, Committee of Divine Worship, Sub-Committee on Pro-life Activities, and the Committee for Ecumenical and Inter-Religious Affairs. Bishop Flores is also a member of the Board of Directors of Catholic Relief Services (CRS). Brownsville, TX



Joan Knetemann previously served as the Director of Institutional Advancement for the Washington Theological Union, the institution from which she also received her Master’s Degree in Theology. She also served as interim Executive Director of the Carmelite Institute of North America, and has taught theology at DC area high schools. Currently, she is working in the private sector in marketing and community relations for ACCFamily and AKOTA Home Health Services. Joan enjoys volunteering with Georgetown University’s RCIA program as a retreat facilitator and educator. 



Ralph McCloud is the director of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD), an anti-poverty program of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. CCHD is the domestic anti-poverty program of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.  Prior to working with the USCCB, Ralph worked as Director of Pastoral and Community Services in the Diocese of Fort Worth Texas. In this capacity, he supervised the Departments of Family Life, Peace and Justice, African American Ministry, Ministry to the Incarcerated, Ministry to People with Disabilities, Hospital Ministry and Hispanic Ministry.  He has served as President of the National Association of Black Catholic Administrators and as a board member of both the National Black Catholic Congress and the Roundtable Association of Social Action Directors. 

Ralph served four terms on the Fort Worth City Council from 1997–2005 and three terms as Mayor Pro Tempore. He chaired the County Homeless Commission and was named Tarrant County’s First Racial Reconciliation Award Winner by the Tarrant County Community of Churches. He is also the recipient of the State of Texas Courage Award from the Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty. In 2009, he was awarded the History Maker Award from the Archdiocese of Atlanta and Catholic Charities USA’s Martin Luther King Keep the Dream Alive Award in 2010.



Dennis Harry Reeder is a Communications Executive & Development Consultant, producer and photographer. Mr. Reeder is also an accomplished video and documentary still photographer whose assignments have ranged across North America and Europe. His expertise is reflected in his client portfolios, including defense and international affairs, design, the arts, environmental, design, and historic preservation subjects, adult education and training, and social justice. Building on his career experience and personal networks, Dennis began a pro bono third career in communications and development for social justice organizations, actively supporting Catholic Mobilizing Network. Alexandria, VA



Brian W. Stolarz is an award-winning criminal defense attorney and best-selling author. He is dedicated to pro bono service and received the Pro Bono Legal Service Award and the Caritas Award from Catholic Charities for the Archdiocese of Washington as well as the Light of Justice Award from Texas Defender Service. Mr. Stolarz served as counsel to Alfred Dewayne Brown, who was exonerated in June 2015 after serving 10 years on Texas’s death row. His work has been profiled in the Washington Post, the Houston Chronicle, and on the Today Show. Mr. Stolarz’s book, Grace and Justice on Death Row, premiered on the Washington Post bestseller list for non-fiction.

 Brian worked for a white-collar criminal defense boutique in New York Morvillo, Abramowitz, Grand, Iason & Anello and the international law firm K&L Gates LLP, in Washington, DC.  He was a staff attorney for the Criminal Defense Division of the Legal Aid Society in Brooklyn, New York, where he served as counsel to hundreds of indigent defendants facing all types of criminal offenses.  He is currently a partner at LeClairRyan in Alexandria, VA.


Board News