Equipping churches to be at the forefront of violence reduction in their community

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Interrupting Bad Actions

Building Blocks of Peace: Identify, train, and mobilize partner churches, community groups, and residents to become Peace Makers. They engage in Positive Loitering in troubled spots to change the dynamics of that place, in coordination with the Chicago Police Department. Upcoming Trainings

Intercepting Bad Actors

Intervention Connections: An in-person visit by community stakeholders with a message of hope and offer of help—of acute offenders with a team assigned to coach and mentor them into a radically different and more productive life pattern.


fewer homicides in Together Chicago's violence reduction focus area, Jan 1 - Sep 30, 2021, compared to previous year


fewer shootings in Together Chicago's violence reduction focus area, Jan 1 - Sep 30, 2021, compared to previous year

faith leaders trained to participate in Custom Notifications

street outreach team members preventing and responding to violence in our focus area


“I would also like to extend my sincere thanks for the outreach work that the members of Together Chicago have been doing in District 020 following the tragic murder of a teenager here on March 16th.

The victim’s family was, and remains, grief-stricken. Some members of the family expressed rage and anger as well, with threats of retaliation. Your prayers for the family and your visits to their home have been crucial in helping to interrupt the potential cycle of violence and retaliation.

As our police investigation continues, the victim’s family can take a measure of comfort from knowing that they have spiritual support from caring members in their community. Together Chicago is playing a vital role in lifting up those who have suffered this tremendous loss, while helping to ensure that other families do not experience a similar tragedy.

I appreciate the work that you have been doing, and that you continue to do. As we work towards the resolution of this case, the name of your organization reminds me that we are all in this journey together, and together, we are better.

Thank you again for all that you are doing. I appreciate you and I will keep you in my prayers as well.

Take care and God bless.”

Brendan McCrudden
Commander, 20th District
Chicago Police Department

Our Team

Co-Founder & Co-CEO

Michael Allen

Michael Allen is Co-Founder & Co-CEO of Together Chicago. He was born in Kingston, Jamaica and immigrated to Fort Lauderdale, Florida with his family in 1977.  In 1986 he became a naturalized U.S. citizen.

Early in his professional career, Michael was called into ministry under the leadership of Dr. O.S. Hawkins, First Baptist Church – Ft. Lauderdale (1989). In 1997, Michael served as Assistant Pastor of Urban Outreach and Evangelism at The Moody Church in Chicago, IL . Michael also served as the Associate Pastor at Sagemont Church in Houston, TX (2002) and most recently as the Senior Pastor at Uptown Baptist Church. He also serves as Vice Chairman of the board of the Pacific Garden Mission.

Michael holds a Masters in Divinity from Trinity International University, a Bachelors of Arts in Biblical Studies from Trinity College – Miami, FL and an Associates in Computer Electronics.

Michael is married to Marilza from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and they have 4 children.

Restorative Justice Consultant

Tio Hardiman

Tio Hardiman, Executive Director for Violence Interrupters, NFP, two-time Gubernatorial Candidate, has dedicated his life and career to community organizing for peace and social change. In 1999 -2013. Mr. Hardiman joined CeaseFire, an award-winning public health model that has been scientifically proven to reduce shootings and killings. In 2004, Tio created the Violence Interrupters Initiative. Tio has served as Executive Director for Violence Interrupters, NFP from 2013- present.

Tio also joined forces with Together Chicago in late 2019 to help oversee the Violence Reduction efforts in the Westhaven Park Community.

He also holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Liberal Arts from Northeastern University and a Masters Degree in Inner City Studies.

Case Manager

Dr. La’Shawn Littrice

Dr. La’Shawn Littrice (Lit-treese) received her PhD in Community Psychology from National Louis University. La’Shawn was born and raised on the Southside of Chicago in the Englewood Community. She knew from her studies as a child that she wanted to be an entrepreneur and decided to pursue her education at National Louis University, where she obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting. She worked in the corporate sector for a few years while building her accounting business on the side. Eventually, she opened an accounting firm and became a full-time business owner. As a business owner, she became concerned about the community and those affected by the lack of equal opportunities, violence and incarceration. She and her husband opened a non-profit organization, in addition to a few other businesses where they assisted youth who wanted to go to college obtain funds by teaching them entrepreneurial skills as well as men who were returning from prison, reintegrate into society by creating employment opportunities for them.

La’Shawn operated her accounting firm for almost 20 years and then she developed a passion to advocate for those affected by incarceration. She returned to school at NLU and graduated in 2015 with her Master’s in Public Policy. She focused her research on Alternatives to Mass Incarceration. She is the former co-founder of the organization called Black Lives Matter Women of Faith. She continued to pursue her studies to become a Doctor of Philosophy at NLU where she focused on The Intergenerational Separation and Movement Toward Reunion: A Mixed Quantitative and Qualitative Methods Examination of Parents, Incarceration and Relationships With Their Children, where she focused on African Americans parents and the relationships with their children after incarceration. La’Shawn founded Make Noize for Change, NFP, where she works in the community to address systemic issues like demanding a quality education for our youth, racism, homelessness, poverty, and violence at the hands of law enforcement against Black and Brown people. She has joined forces with Justice For Nick Foundation to fight against the inhumane treatment of people who are behind the walls. Her passion has caused her to continue to fight for the lives of those in the community to recognize their voice and the value of their lives. La’Shawn will continue making a difference by furthering her work in the community by planning to open a non-profit organization that encompasses assisting those affected by incarceration as well as their families and children. She has been appointed as the Director of Mass Incarceration, Criminal Justice Reform and Restorative Justice by the National Congress on Faith and Social Justice. La’Shawn’s dedication, compassion and love for the community is indicative of the values promoted by NLU and its commitment to prepare each person for success. She is committed to impacting change in the lives of those who are disenfranchised by collaborating with people and organizations that desire to see equality achieved in the lives of people no matter what their ethnicity or socio-economic background encompasses.

Violence Reduction Strategist

Christopher Mallette

Christopher Mallette is a renowned community safety strategist and management consultant. 

Christopher Mallette has devoted his life to advocating for social justice and serving residents and children in the city of Chicago and other U.S. urban communities. He is the former Executive Director of the Chicago Violence Reduction Strategy (CVRS) where he worked to reduce group and gang violence in the City of Chicago.  The focus of Christopher’s work has been and continues to be the development of collaborative strategies that reconcile communities by helping members to identify and value one another’s place in the social fabric of the community.

Prior to assuming his role with CVRS, Christopher served in the Mayor’s Office as the Director of Community Safety Initiatives where he focused on youth violence prevention, juvenile justice, gang intervention and prevention, and ex-offender reentry initiatives.  Before his appointment to the Mayor’s Office, Christopher served as the Executive Director of Chicago’s Juvenile Intervention Support Center. He has also served the City of Chicago as an Assistant Corporation Counsel, various roles at the Faith Community of St. Sabina, and Chicago Public Schools. 

He is also the Head Football Coach at Chicago’s Whitney M. Young Magnet High School.  Mallette is a Princeton University graduate and received his Law Degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Law. Christopher and his wife Kendall have four sons: Luke, Zion, Judah and Levi.

Chief Church Liaison Officer

Edward Peecher

Chicago native. One of 7 children. Revolutionary.

After years of leading Chicago Embassy Church, in 2017 Ed became a spiritual advisor to Chicago business and government leaders and is currently Chief Church Liaison Officer at Together Chicago.

As a child of the 1960’s Civil Rights movement, Ed has been involved in community relations for nearly 50 years. As a young adult, he joined the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party, to bring awareness to the national injustices debilitating the African-American community. In 1969, he was employed by AT&T and served the organization for many years. While at At&T, Ed started a bible study in its downtown headquarters after receiving the calling from Jesus Christ. In 1983 New Heritage Christian Center was formed and two years later Ed resigned from his Account Executive position to pastor full-time.

Ed holds a Certificate in Pastoral Studies from Moody Bible Institute (1975). He continues to guest-teach at several Bible Colleges and Seminaries. He has groomed many spiritual leaders, many of whom are serving as senior pastors locally and internationally.

Ed and his wife, Katie, have 3 children, two of which have proceeded them into eternity. 

Director of Violence Reduction

LaVonas Troupe

Born and raised on the West Side of Chicago in the Henry Horner Homes (now Westhaven Park), LaVonas grew up under the influence of James “Major” Adams, and played the drums at the Henry Horner Boys & Girls Club. After Suder Elementary, LaVonas was accepted at the prestigious Von Steuben High School, where he was, ironically, expelled for fighting. He graduated from Flower Vocational High School (now Al Raby HS) in East Garfield Park and went on to attend Southern Illinois University – Carbondale.

Before Together Chicago, LaVonas served as an Operations Manager for Chicago Area Projects for 20 years under the leadership of Howard Lathan and Geneva Peterson Castleberry, helping lead community-focused work of Youth Services, Violence Prevention, and Community Advocacy.

LaVonas joined the Together Chicago team in 2021 as a West Side Street Outreach Worker. His diligence and perseverance enabled him to become a Certified Youth Developer and a Certified Professional Street Outreach Worker through the Metropolitan Peace Academy. His innate leadership qualities and dedication to help others resolve conflicts without violence led to LaVonas’ advancement: as the Director of TC’s Violence Reduction Initiatives, he oversees the entire Street Outreach Team, Case Managers, Victim Services Advocates, and Crisis Response Specialists.


Be a part of this collective effort to improve safety in Chicago communities

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