Every day, the MCAP team empowers abused and neglected children to live safely and happily by giving them give them a voice to be nurtured children free of violence and shame. As committed professionals, we help kids recapture their youths by breaking the cycle of domestic violence, so they will be the SUPERHeroes, they were born to be!
As MCAP’s Executive Director, Mary oversees our daily operations, promotes our work in the legal and child welfare realms locally and nationally, and expands our efforts in education and advocacy. She also represents children as an MCAP. Prior to her work with MCAP, Mary was a trial attorney concentrating in medical malpractice, defending healthcare providers and hospitals. As an active member of the Pennsylvania Bar Association (PBA), Ms. Pugh is a Zone 9 delegate, the co-chairperson to the PBA Legal Services to the Public Committee, served as the chairperson of the Child Advocate of the Children’s Rights Committee. A member since 1989, Mary is the current President of the Montgomery Bar Association (MBA) and serves as the chairperson of the Child Advocacy Committee, member of the Outreach Committee, and a past member of the Membership Committee. She is also a fellow of the MBA Bar Foundation. For her service with MCAP, has been recognized with several awards: the Pennsylvania Bar Association Everyday Leader Award in 2006; the American Bar Association General Practice, Solo & Small Firm Division 2007 Difference Makers Award; the Special Recognition Award of the Pennsylvania Bar Association in 2009; the Milton O. Moss Award from the MBA in 2010; and a PLAN (PA Legal Aid Network) Excellence Award in 2018. Mary is a member of the Youth Aid Panel of Montgomery County, the Children’s Roundtable and the former Chairperson of the Montgomery County Office of Children & Youth Citizens Advisory Committee. Mary graduated summa cum laude from Rosemont College. She received the Genevieve Blatt Award and Esther Sylvester Law School scholarship to Villanova Law School where she served as a member of the Law Review from 1985-1986. Mary lives in Montgomery County and is married to William Pugh, V, and has four daughters and one granddaughter.
Sharon began volunteering as an MCAP in 2008, and joined the staff as Senior Staff Attorney in early 2018. In her new role, Sharon represents child victims of abuse, neglect and trafficking, manages and provides support for our volunteer MCAPs, and supports the Executive Director in education and advocacy activities. Prior to MCAP, Sharon was Director of Operations for the Associated Builders & Contractors, New Jersey Chapter. Sharon began her career as a contract attorney and then spent time working in consumer advocacy, insurance coverage and defense, and land use /zoning. Sharon has been an active member of the Montgomery Bar Association since 2005. In 2017, she served as co-chair of the Juvenile Rules Committee. She currently serves as co-chair of the Children and the Law Committee. She is also a member of the Pennsylvania Bar Association. She is admitted to practice in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the U.S. District Court for Eastern District of PA; the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit, and the U.S. Supreme Court. Ms. Hofer is a co-founder and the first president of the Montgomery County Paralegal Association. She serves on the Board of Directors, and holds the office of Secretary, for Advanced Living Management & Development, Inc., which provides affordable housing and services for elderly and disabled individuals while they are aging in place, as well as others in need of transitional housing. Sharon lives in Lansdale with her husband and their dog.
Cynthia is a 1991 graduate of California Western School of Law. While in law school, Cynthia interned with the San Diego City Attorney’s office in the domestic violence/child abuse unit. After graduating, she worked with the Law Offices of Peters & Freedman in San Diego, California where she represented homeowners associations and practiced civil litigation. When she opened her own law practice in 1997, her focus turned to family law and victim advocacy. Cynthia moved back to Pennsylvania in 2001, and since 2004 has had the privilege of serving as a child advocate for the Montgomery Child Advocacy Project where she volunteers her time representing child victims of abuse and neglect. In May 2017, Cynthia became a staff attorney for MCAP, and continues in her passionate advocacy for our legal system’s most vulnerable victims, giving a voice to children in the legal system who otherwise would go unseen and unheard.
Shannon Hayden, Esq.- Shannon joined the MCAP family as a part-time Staff Attorney in October 2017. She brings with her a dedication to public service and a strong desire to ensure quality representation is provided to vulnerable populations. Prior to joining MCAP, Shannon was the Montgomery County Public Defender’s Dependency Unit Chief, where she provided representation to hundreds of children whose families were involved with the Office of Children and Youth. She was previously a Staff Attorney in the Public Defender’s Juvenile Delinquency Unit, representing children accused of criminal conduct in Montgomery County. Shannon attended the Kline School of Law at Drexel University (formerly the Earle Mack School of Law). While in Law School, she completed a full year Appellate Litigation Clinic, culminating in oral argument before the Third Circuit Court of Appeals; interned with Legal Aid of Southeastern Pennsylvania, and the American Civil Liberties Union – Pennsylvania Chapter; and provided pro bono services to pro se filers at the Philadelphia Domestic Violence Pro Se Filing Unit, and to people seeking assistance with immigration forms and procedures at the Brehon Society’s Immigration Clinic. Shannon lives in Montgomery County with her husband, daughter and dog.
Pat became the Program Coordinator for MCAP in 2012, coordinating our volunteer efforts and interacting daily with our MCAPs to place them with children in need of our services. She also works closely with the entire MCAP team, tracking the children we serve, helping MCAPs get the help they need with cases, and assisting with fundraising and events. She lives in Conshohocken with her cat and enjoys time with her grandchildren.
Heather Evans is MCAP’s first full-time Development Director. She brings to the role 27 years of professional development experience and, as a survivor of child sexual abuse from Montgomery County, a personal connection to MCAP’s mission. Heather is responsible for increasing MCAP’s organizational capacity by expanding our fundraising efforts, building our community partnerships, and enhancing visibility. Before joining the MCAP family, Heather had her own development consulting business where she worked with a diverse client base including arts, women’s health and education organizations. She is a 12-year board member of Azuka Theatre, an award-winning Philadelphia theatre company. She was also a committee member of the Community Music School of Trappe’s “Friends of Ingrid” capital campaign and helped to secure the lead gift to name the 202-seat concert hall for her late mother, Ingrid Larsen Evans. Heather is a graduate of Washington College in Chestertown, MD, and earned her Masters of Liberal Arts at the University of Pennsylvania. She is a certified yoga instructor and lives in the Germantown neighborhood of Philadelphia with her two rescue dogs.