Abbey attended Mills College in Oakland, California where she majored in Ethnic Studies with a minor in Hispanic Studies. In 2002, Abbey completed her master’s degree in administrative social work at Portland State University. While working on her degree, she interned with the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office to design and implement programs for Spanish speaking inmates. Abbey also interned with the Department of Community Justice, where she worked on projects with then DCJ Director and former LSPCC Executive Committee Member Joanne Fuller. After graduation, Abbey worked as a social worker at the Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center in Cornelius, where she provided mental health services to Spanish speaking patients.
In 2004, she began working with the Multnomah County Department of Community Justice as a Mental Health Consultant to provide outpatient treatment to high-risk youth on probation. In 2009, Abbey switched to administrative positions including Community Justice Manager and Juvenile Court Improvement Coordinator. As the Juvenile Court Improvement Coordinator, she collaborated with many LPSCC Executive Committee members including the Presiding and Chief Family Law Judges, along with juvenile justice and child welfare leadership. Her work addressed system reforms including decreasing the disproportionate representation of children and youth of color in the juvenile system, as well as changing foster care to help keep children safely at home whenever possible. Abbey was also faculty for the Multnomah County Juvenile Services Division “System Integration and Resource Network,” where she teaches metro-area police recruits and field training officers about adolescent brain development, neurobiology of trauma, trauma informed care, and mental health.
Abbey joined LPSCC as the Executive Director in June, 2013. Since then, she has led collaborative efforts to improve public safety and criminal justice locally by winning a slot in the MacArthur Foundation's Safety + Justice Challenge, helped lead policy development for the Justice Reinvestment Program, and launched the Transforming Justice Project.
In her free time, Abbey enjoys hiking, biking, cooking, and walking her Golden Retriever.