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Institute Staff

Jennifer Paschen Bergeron
Attorney, Ohio Innocence Project

BA, Centre College, Phi Beta Kappa
MA, University of Virginia
JD, University of Cincinnati

Following her graduation from University of Cincinnati College of Law, where she was a member of Law Review and a Fellow with the Urban Morgan Institute for Human Rights, Jennifer Paschen Bergeron worked in general litigation at Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP.

She later joined Ulmer & Berne LLP in the Labor and Employment Group before serving in her current position as attorney for the Ohio Innocence Project.


Donald Caster
Attorney, Ohio Innocence Project

BA, Youngstown State University
JD, University of Cincinnati

Donald graduated from the University of Cincinnati College of Law, where he was a member of Moot Court and Law Review and a fellow at the Urban Morgan Institute for Human Rights. Following a clerkship with a federal district court judge, Donald joined Gerhardstein, Branch & Laufman, a boutique civil rights firm, as an associate.

Donald subsequently opened his own practice, focusing on criminal defense and appellate litigation. He later served in the appellate division of the Butler County Prosecutor's Office before joining the Ohio Innocence Project as an attorney.


Rashida Manuel
Executive Staff Assistant

MA, University of Cincinnati

Rashida joins the OIP after a career in healthcare marketing for Medicaid managed care and ACA health plans. She brings several years of experience in engaging economically vulnerable communities around health care access and has worked in both private and public sectors to connect those in crisis with community and government resources.



Brian Howe
Attorney, Ohio Innocence Project

BA, The Ohio State University
JD, University of Cincinnati College of Law

After graduation, Brian was awarded an Equal Justice Works fellowship representing consumers who faced predatory lending and servicing practices in rural southwest Ohio. He continued this work as a staff attorney with the Legal Aid Society of Southwest Ohio before joining the Ohio Innocence Project in 2014.


Liza DietrichLiza Dietrich
Research and Writing Specialist & Outreach Program Coordinator

BA, Ohio University
JD, University of Cincinnati

Liza Dietrich is an attorney registered with the Ohio Bar and a former fellow with the Ohio Innocence Project. In 2014, Liza was brought on to OIP as a Research and Writing Specialist and Outreach Program Coordinator. In her role as Outreach Program Coordinator, Liza manages OIP’s undergraduate advocate network, OIP-u, which engages students in OIP’s cause and promotes widespread awareness of wrongful conviction.