Tilly joined Praxis International in 1998. While at Praxis, she has managed national training and technical assistance projects, redesigned supervised visitation center policies and practices used across the nation, and co-developed the Advocacy Learning Center.

She has developed, co-authored, or contributed to multiple training and technical assistance resources used by communities throughout the country.

She has advised the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention at the U. S. Department of Justice about advocacy on behalf of commercially sexually exploited children.

Tilly traveled to Budapest, Hungary, with the Soros Foundation Women’s Program to conduct training on domestic violence intervention strategies for Eastern European NGOs, law enforcement and prosecution professionals, and journalists.

She was a member of the Praxis audit team that conducted a Safety and Accountability Audit in Saint Paul, Minnesota, in 2007. The audit led to the development of Saint Paul’s Blueprint for Safety.

In addition to working at Praxis, Tilly loves her weekly art class where she is learning to draw and paint. She is also a member of the Midwest Miniature Guild and greatly enjoys building and collecting miniatures, including miniature mechanical art pieces.

Her enthusiasm for beautiful small things extends to her flower garden—she wins blue ribbons for her miniature fresh flower arrangements at the Minnesota State Fair.

Previous experience
Tilly became active in the movement to end violence against women in 1979.

Starting as an advocate for battered women and their children in a rural shelter, she went on to conduct training on domestic violence around the country.

For the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project in Duluth, Minnesota, she implemented coordinated community responses to domestic violence on U. S. Marine Corps bases in Japan and in the United States.

At the Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women for 8 years, she coordinated statewide legislative initiatives, helped develop Minnesota’s model arrest and prosecution policies, initiated policy changes on violence against women by law enforcement officers, and managed a battered women’s defense fund project.

She coordinated media relations and media advocacy efforts, created numerous public awareness campaigns and materials, and trained 140 advocacy programs on legal advocacy, media advocacy, and public awareness.

In 1989, Tilly created the first annual Minnesota femicide report, which was the first state femicide report in the nation.


  • Served on board of directors, Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women
  • Past member of Minnesota Attorney General’s Task Force on Sexual Violence
  • Former member of the Minnesota News Council, an organization promoting public accountability by the news media
  • Volunteered with Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights to train Bulgarian advocates seeking to secure their country’s first domestic violence legislation


  • Co-authored
    • Engage to Protect: Foundations for Supervised Visitation and Safe Exchange
    • Engaging with Battered Women in Supervised Visitation Centers
    • Engaging with Men Who Batter in Supervised Visitation Centers
    • Building the Practice of Orientation in Supervised Visitation and Safe Exchange: A Trainers Guide
  • Developed  Hands Are Not For Hitting, an award-winning public awareness campaign
  • Developed public awareness campaigns on domestic violence for Native American, Latino, African American, and Southeast Asian communities
  • Named “Newsmaker of the Year” by The Minnesota Women’s Press
  • Co-developed training resources
    • Poder y Control: Tácticas De Hombres Que Abusan (Power & Control: Tactics of Men Who Batter), an educational curriculum in Spanish
    • Tácticas de Control: La Visión de la Mujer (Tactics of Control: A Woman’s Perspective), a Spanish video for women’s groups
    • The Story of Rachel, a DVD depicting how systems respond to a battered woman after she calls 911
    • It’s hard to know what to do, a public awareness campaign encouraging rural community members to learn how to help women who are being abused
    • Advocacy on Behalf of Women Used in Prostitution: A Handbook for Rural Advocates
    • DVD and discussion guide From the Ground Up: Strategies for Organizing in Rural Communities
    • Safety Evaluation for Battered Women: A Guide for Practitioners and Policymakers