Home Local Maryland Government Announcement Originally published February 01, 2010


Board convened to reform 2006 law; First meeting to be held February 5
ANNAPOLIS, MD (February 1, 2010) – Governor Martin O’Malley today announced the appointments of six members to the reconstituted Sexual Offender Advisory Board, just days after announcing a series of legislative initiatives targeted at protecting Maryland families from sexual predators and strict enforcement of sex offender laws, including lifetime supervision for certain sex offenses.  Last week, Governor O’Malley announced former Maryland Attorney General Joseph Curran as Chair of the Board.  The Board will initially serve to advocate for legislation to strengthen the Board and redefine its purpose. Earlier today, Governor Martin O’Malley and Washington, DC Mayor Adrian M. Fenty met to discuss ongoing efforts to enhance cross-border coordination in improving public safety throughout the region.

“The new members of the Board announced today have one thing in common: a strong desire to protect our most vulnerable citizens – our children,” said Governor O’Malley.  “I am confident that their combined knowledge, background and expertise, and their advocacy of our legislation to impose the strictest standards of supervision of sex offenders will help strengthen our efforts to ensure that Maryland’s children are protected.”

The Sexual Offender Advisory Board was established in 2006 and charged with, among other things, training sexual offender management teams in the Division of Parole and Probation, certifying sexual offender treatment providers, and making policy recommendations.  However, there was no requirement that the members of this Board have any of the specialized skills necessary for certifying programs, conducting training, or even making policy recommendations.  For that reason, and others, the O’Malley-Brown Administration has introduced legislation for the past three years to reenact this Board so that it is properly constituted and charged.  The Governor introduced legislation today to ensure the Board is properly constituted and charged.  General Curran plans to convene a Board meeting on Friday, February 5, 2010. 

The new members of the Sexual Offender Advisory Board include:

Michele J. Hughes, Victims Advocacy Group – Ms. Hughes serves as the Executive Director of the Life Crisis Center, a non-profit, 24-hour facility which provides comprehensive support services to victims and child victims of domestic violence, rape, and sexual assault on Maryland’s lower Eastern Shore.  Prior to that, Ms. Hughes served as the Assistant Secretary for the Office of Professional Responsibility and Accountability at the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services.  In that role, she directed a staff of 25 investigators, accountants and child advocates, and investigated incidents in the Department.  Prior to that, she was the Executive Director of the YWCA of Annapolis & Anne Arundel County, Inc. which serves victims of domestic violence and child abuse.  While there, she increased the budget from $1.7 to $3.2 million and increased their endowment by 500%.  Ms. Hughes also worked at The League: Serving People with Disabilities, Inc., as the Director of Development and Public Relations, and later as the Director of Adult Day Health Services.  She started the first Adult Day Care Program in Maryland for people with AIDS, and the first Adult Day Care Program in Maryland for people with serious brain traumatic injury.  Ms. Hughes earned her Bachelor of Arts from Morgan State University, and received an MBA certificate from Loyola College.  Ms. Hughes is a resident of Mardela Springs in Wicomico County. 
Annette L. Hanson, M.D., Mental Disorders Expert– Dr. Hanson is a Board Certified psychiatrist at the Clifton T. Perkins Hospital Center, where she has worked since 1989.  She also currently serves as a Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, Correctional Psychiatry Specialist at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, Assistant Professor at the Johns Hopkins Hospital, and Director of the Fellowship in Forensic Psychiatry at the University of Maryland School of Medicine.  Dr. Hanson received her Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology, with high honors from the University of Minnesota in 1981, and received her Doctor of Medicine from the University of Minnesota Medical School in 1988.  She performed her psychiatry residency at the Johns Hopkins Hospital from 1989 tom 1992, and was a Fellow of Forensic Psychiatry from 1992 to 1993 at the University of Maryland.  She was licensed to practice in the State of Maryland in 1989.  Dr. Hanson is the Chairperson for the American Academy of Psychiatry and Law Correctional Psychiatry Committee, President of the Manfred Guttmacher Institute, and sits on the Council for the American Academy of Psychiatry and Law, and the Editorial Board of the Journal of Psychiatry and Law.  She is a resident of Baltimore County.

Karla N. Smith, State’s Attorney – Ms. Smith is the Chief Attorney for the Family Violence Division of the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office, where she is responsible for the prosecution of all child abuse, domestic violence, vulnerable adult abuse, and physical elder abuse cases.   Ms. Smith also participates in work groups in Montgomery County, including the Child Fatality Review Team, the Multidisciplinary Case Review Team for Criminal Child Abuse & Assault, the Elder Abuse Task Force, the Interagency Sex Offender Registry and Supervision Team, the Domestic Violence Coordinating Council, and the Case Review Team for Domestic Violence.  Prior to her role as Chief Attorney, Ms. Smith was as Assistant State’s Attorney for the Montgomery County State’s Attorney Office, and worked on cases with an emphasis on crimes relating to child abuse and domestic violence.  From 2005 to 2008, Ms. Smith was an adjunct professor at the University of Maryland at Shady Grove and taught Criminal Courts.  From 2003 to 2004, she was an adjunct professor at American University and taught American Legal Culture.  From 1996 to 1997, she was an Assistant State’s Attorney for the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office and focused on crimes relating to trafficking in illegal narcotics.  Ms. Smith earned her Bachelor of Arts in Government and Politics with a Minor in English from the University of Maryland in 1991, and receive her Juris Doctor from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1995.  She is a member of the Montgomery County Bar Association and the Women’s Bar Association.  She is admitted to practice law in Maryland and the District of Columbia.  She is a resident of Montgomery County.
David Walsh-Little, Esquire, Criminal Defense – Mr. Walsh-Little is an Assistant Public Defender in the Felony Trial Division of Baltimore City.  Prior to that, he worked as a managing attorney of St. Ambrose Legal Services in Baltimore.  Mr. Walsh-Little also served in the Criminal Defense Division of the Legal Aid Society in The Bronx, New York. Mr. Walsh-Little received his Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Fordham University in 1991, and received his Juris Doctor in 1991 from Columbia University School of Law in 1994.  He is a resident of Baltimore City.
Laura Estupian-Kane, Ph.D., Sex Offender Treatment Provider – Dr. Estupian-Kane, a licensed psychologist, holds her own private psychology practice focusing on the assessment of adolescents who have committed sexual offenses and/or are involved with th