Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Michele Tresler-Ulriksen, author of Reform at Victory, is reported to be dead at 41. Details are sketchy, but the spokesperson at her Facebook profile writes that Michele died of accidental overdose. The Survivors of Institutional Abuse, an organization Michele volunteered her services for, cannot give details of her death until further information. Most of her adult life was taken up with writing and publishing Reform at Victory, a memoir of her time at Victory Christian Academy in Ramona, CA, a teen lockdown facility that was closed down due to abusive practices in 1992. It also concerned Carrie Dunn, whose pseudonym in the book is Christi, a girl who died on premises after a stack of drywall fell on her.
Michael Palmer, the man portrayed in Reform at Victory as ‘Brother P’, allegedly tried to open a home in Iowa. Michele contacted the local media and authorities concerning Palmer’s connection to the abusive school he operated in Ramona, CA. The Fort Dodge Messenger published Troubling Legacy by Abigail McWilliam in 2009 that reported Palmer was scoping out buildings in that area.
“The last place she said Palmer might be opening a home is in Hawaii!” said Dwayne Walker, director of media and research at SIA Organization. “
Jodi Hobbs, the President of SIA Organization, credits Michele’s book and dogged pursuit of Palmer’s whereabouts for inspiring her to create SIA Organization.
“The Survivor’s of Institutional Abuse would not be here without Michele.” Jodi says, “Michele inspired others to speak out and share their own testimony of what happened to them. She was an advocate of getting the laws changed and spoke out at numerous events against abuse. Her tireless efforts changed many lives and gave others the strength and courage to come forward. SIA Organization’s first convention will be dedicated in her honor for her commitment and tireless efforts in getting the word out and speaking against institutional abuse.”
Condolences are being left on her Facebook profile.
Links and Articles:
Reform at Victory
Troubling Legacy by Abigail McWilliam
Lockdown: Are Teens and Taxpayers Paying the Price for ‘Christian Reform Schools? by Michele Ulriksen
How Faith Based Initiatives help unlicensed reform schools thrive by Michele Ulriksen
Christian School Confidential article about Reform at Victory.