News Archive


NOV 7 2019

Hands are for Holding: A program for the fight against violence and abuse

Ormao Dance Company and TESSA are partnering to address an urgent crisis for middle and high school youth in El Paso County.
The Hands are for Holding Program combines our youth’s social and emotional well-being with a constructive and preventive approach.
Ormao Dance Company and TESSA are ready to launch this essential program in the community, with El Paso County being the FIRST community outside of NYC to implement this program.

For more information and inquiries please visit Ormao Dance Company’s website.


SEP 30 2019

TESSA pop-up shop sale extended for another week

Because of high demand, TESSA’s pop-up shop will remain open for another week.

TESSA pop-up shop at Promenade Shops at Briargate
The ‘Style for a Cause’ event is set up at a store on the east side of the Promenade Shops at Briargate in Colorado Springs. The store is open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily.


SEP 25 2019

TESSA pop-up shop supporting victims of domestic violence, sexual assault

COLORADO SPRINGS — Shopping while supporting victims of domestic violence and sexual assault – that’s what’s happening at a new pop-up shop in Colorado Springs.

Inside the old Gap building at The Promenade Shops at Briargate is the pop-up shop TESSA with everything form women’s clothing, shoes, and jewelry.

TESSA’s Interim CEO Anne Markley said, “We have anything from Banana Republic, White House Black Market, Ann Taylor, Chico’s, Coldwater Creek, Dolce & Gabbana, Escada, you name it, it’s here.”


AUG 8 2019

‘We hope it changes the culture’: D-2 pilots new teen dating violence curriculum

As students get ready to head back to class on Thursday, teachers in Harrison School District 2 are preparing to pilot a new program.

In partnership with TESSA, a group that provides resources for victims of domestic violence, D-2 will be teaching middle and high schoolers about teen dating violence.


July 12 2019

Why does Colorado Springs have more domestic violence calls than Denver?

Every single day in Colorado Springs, police respond to an average of about 40 domestic violence calls. We’re told that number is much higher than Denver’s.

Courtney Sutton, the safety and support manager with TESSA, says there’s a lot of reasons why Colorado Springs police are getting about 40 calls a day related to domestic violence.

“I think our culture has a lot to do with it. Domestic violence is about entitlement, it’s about power and control and thinking you can have control over your partner,” says Sutton.


July 11 2019

Ormao Dance Company and TESSA partner with New York dance group for anti-bullying program

Ormao Dance Company in partnership with TESSA, a local organization focused on domestic violence and sexual assault prevention, will provide an in-school dance assembly program that is based on Gibney Dance Company’s Hands are for Holding program. Gibney Dance Company, based in New York City, has worked with survivors of intimate partner violence for decades, but in 2003 they turned their sights not only to healing trauma, but to preventing that trauma from happening in the first place.


June 26 2019

Stories from victims of domestic violence

They used to stand outside the Pioneers Museum every year.

Solemn red cutouts shaped like human beings, each with a sign hung around their neck telling a story. Each one representing a person lost to domestic violence.


June 16 2019

Fifth Annual Triple T’s Party

Wear your Tiara, enjoy a special Womans Club (mar)Tini, and bring a box of Tampons (or other feminine hygiene product) as part of your entry fee! This is our annual feminine hygiene products drive which benefits several local non-profits who provide services dedicated to women.

Did you know that feminine hygiene products cannot be purchased with food stamps?


May 30 2019

Voices and Views on the TESSA “It’s Not OK” Campaign

On Voices and Views on KCMJ, Judith interviews SherryLynn Boyles, TESSA Executive Director about TESSA’s new “It’s Not OK” Campaign.

It’s Not Okay Campaign Launch: “Everyone tends to focus on the victims,” says TESSA Executive Director SherryLynn Boyles. “People want to know ‘why don’t they leave?’ when we need to be asking ‘how can we stop the violence from ever happening?” “We are starting with a campaign that shifts that focus and says it’s never okay for someone to be abusive.”

It’s Okay to Ask for Help. Call for help at: 855-978-2638 for information about services that can help you if you are experiencing or witnessing violence, or if you’re using violence and want to change your own behavior. It is okay to ask for help


May 29 2019

Meet the grantees

The Transforming Safety initiative in 2018 awarded about $1.5 million worth of grants to nonprofit organizations, government entities and schools doing work in, for and with the residents of Southeast Colorado Springs.

The recipients were chosen by a community selection committee and are using the funds to help stem the prison pipeline by stopping crime before it starts. The Southeast Express reached out to all 21 grantees for more information about the projects. Not every organization answered every question; however, here’s what we learned.


May 23 2019

The Extra with Renae Roberts

There are high rates of domestic and sexual violence plaguing the Pikes Peak region. TESSA Executive Director, SherryLynn Boyles, talks about the numbers, the different types of domestic violence, a new public awareness campaign called ‘IT’s NOT OKAY’, and a lot more.


May 23 2019

Take a stand against relationship and sexual violence

We talked with Rica Molet, the Communications and Outreach Coordinator at TESSA about their new campaign launch and how to get in touch with them if you are using abusive behaviors or being abused.


May 23 2019

New domestic violence campaign aims to help abusers change

Mayor Suthers, the 4th Judicial District Attorney and family members of domestic violence murder victims joined TESSA in announcing the campaign Wednesday.

“It was not something that we realized was happening and then we learned a lot through the process of going to trial in the district attorneys and investigators and domestic violence experts we learned so much about how important stuff is to pay attention to,” Jerrica Bickford told 11 News. Her sister, Jaclyn Funderburg was killed by her ex-boyfriend and father of her child back in 2007. Funderburg’s ex, Salvator Esquivel-Castillo assaulted her just a few weeks before she was murdered.


May 22 2019

11 News in the Morning Segment

11 News Morning Anchors interview SherryLynn Boyles, Executive Director, on the morning of the “It’s Not Okay” Campaign launch and discuss more in detail what the campaign is about and how the community will be impacted.

Watch here

May 22 2019

TESSA launches “It’s Not Okay” Public Awareness Campaign

“Nationally, one in four women and one in seven men will experience domestic violence in their lifetimes. Folks, that is simply unacceptable,” Springs Mayor John Suthers.


March 8 2019

Darryl Glenn joins TESSA of Colorado Springs as Chief Development Officer

Former El Paso County Commissioner Darryl Glenn has been hired by a local nonprofit that serves domestic violence survivors.


FEb 27 2019

Safety grant helping outreach efforts to prevent incarceration

The Transforming Safety Grant wants to prevent folks from ending up behind bars.
At Tuesday’s city council meeting, the City of Colorado Springs shared a proclamation to celebrate the project’s success.


FEb 22 2019

TESSA in the Community

Courtney Sutton, Safety and Support Manager at TESSA, talks to Mike Lewis, on KRDO News Radio about TESSA in the community


Jan 4 2019

Violence Against Women Act lapses during shutdown, imperiling help for victims

The year 2018 was known for the #MeToo movement in which victims across the country rose up against sexual assault and harassment — ending careers for several powerful men implicated in the crimes — and encouraged others to follow suit.



DEC 20 2018

How to talk to domestic violence victims about abuse

Domestic violence thrives in the shadows of secrecy, making it difficult to talk to victims who may try to hide the abuse out of shame or fear. But experts in El Paso County and the Colorado Springs area say there are ways to approach the conversation if you suspect someone you love is being abused.


DEC 20 2018

5 mental health tips for the holidays

But the holidays can come with unique mental health challenges.


DEC 20 2018

Domestic violence in El Paso County: Leaders, advocates say small steps can equal big change | Part 4 of 4

Domestic Violence experts discuss a number of ways to help end abuse in Colorado Springs, but argue it will taken cooperation from the entire community to achieve. “Our community has stepped up to do that,” one official said.


DEC 19 2018

Domestic violence in El Paso County: Are offenders capable of change? One man’s transformation | Part 3 of 4

Three years ago this month, Geoff was just starting El Paso County’s Domestic Violence Court program after a 65-day stay in jail for violating terms of a permanent protection order.


DEC 18 2018

Domestic violence in El Paso County: It’s difficult to win protection orders against abuse | Part 2 of 4

El Paso County has the second highest number of domestic violence cases in the state, with 40 domestic violence homicides in the last five years, yet it’s one of the hardest counties in which to win protection orders to guard against that abuse, according to experts and records.


DEC 17 2018

Domestic violence in El Paso County: Records show we’re among worst in Colorado | Part 1 of 4

Editor’s note: This is part 1 of a 4-part Shattered Lives series on domestic violence in El Paso County.


NOV 23 2018

TESSA helping women, children

Women dealing with domestic and sexual violence and its repercussions turn to TESSA for assistance every day. This can be through the organization’s 32-bed safe house, victim advocacy, counseling, a 24/7 hotline, children’s programs and community outreach/education.


Oct 24 2018

Colorado Springs Health Foundation looks to prevent abuse with local grants

The Colorado Springs Health Foundation will award almost $600,000 in grants to nine organizations in El Paso and Teller counties working to prevent child abuse and support victims.


Oct 14 2018

AROUND TOWN: TESSA’s domestic violence/sexual assault prevention shares #MeToo spotlight

The impact of the #MeToo movement and the women openly speaking out was fresh on the minds of nearly 700 people at TESSA’s Sept. 15 Gala, “The Encore.”


Oct 5 2018

EDITORIAL: Let’s focus on ending domestic violence

October is Domestic Violence Awareness month.

Perhaps one of the most heinous life’s potential crises is finding oneself living with an abuser in a relationship that is supposed to be about love.


Oct 4 2018

TESSA announces merger with Women’s Resource Center

Colorado Springs nonprofit TESSA has merged with the Women’s Resource Agency, combining services to women and their children who are victims of sexual and family violence.


Sep 27 2018

Kavanaugh hearing prompts questions on sex abuse reporting laws

“Not everybody is ready to make that decision at that point, especially. This is something that’s very traumatic that happens to you,” said Courtney Sutton, safety and support manager at Tessa.


Sep 26 2018

Sexual assaults reporting in Colorado Springs may not be higher after #MeToo movement

In 2014, the latest nationwide numbers say nearly 30,000 women have reported being victim to sexual assault or harassment.


Sep 18 2018


Two of the most prominent nonprofit organizations that are focused on our area’s most vulnerable residents are combining forces to strengthen and broaden their mission and impact on the local community. TESSA and Women’s Resource Agency have confirmed their strategic initiative to begin integrating overall services starting immediately as a staged effort, with TESSA as the acquiring entity.


AUG 28 2018

TESSA Empowers Individuals Struggling with Abuse

Living Local on Fox21 News

TESSA of Colorado Springs focuses on empowering victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse. For more information about everything TESSA of Colorado Springs provides, visit Watch the video of Executive Director, SherryLynn Boyles by click on the button below


May 1 2018

Voted “Most Memorable Gala”

TESSA’S 40 years Ruby Anniversary Gala- Voted “Most Memorable Gala”- Best of the Springs

Months after this gala, many of the 750 who attended were still brought to tears or lumps in the throat remembering parts of an unforgettable evening. TESSA’s work is, by its nature, heartbreaking as it empowers victims of domestic violence and continues work to slow sexual assault. This anniversary acknowledged 40 years of work and the dream for a less violent future…

Read More

April 26 2018

Rape survivor fights back, encourages others to do the same

“I will never talk the same. I’ll never walk the same. Nothing’s ever going to be the same. But… I don’t want to lose faith,” Roxanne Blevins said.
She was divorced after two decades of marriage and decided to get back in the dating game. Like a lot of people she tried online dating.

Read More

April 21 2018

Sexual assault victims receive a life sentence

Opinions of SherryLynn Boyles

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month — suggesting we should all be more aware of sexual assault. Not a bad idea in concept, but rape is hardly a topic people would like to spend their time thinking about when they’re not thinking about their jobs, families, and hobbies.

Read More


Colorado Springs Living Well Magazine…

“names SherryLynn Boyles one of the Most Inspiring Women”

Read More

FEB 2018

TESSA Project LIFT Update

“Originally, TESSA expected to serve approximately 125 clients over the course of the 20-month grant. Due to the increased confidence victims have with legal representation, 125 victims were assigned attorneys after only five months.”

Read More

FEB 15

TESSA announces ‘No Excuse for Abuse’ Task Force

“On Wednesday, TESSA announced their new No Excuse for Abuse Task Force, aiming to stop domestic and sexual violence.”

Read More

FEB 14

Colorado Springs nonprofit announces domestic and sexual violence task force

“Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers will serve as honorary chairman of a task force dedicated to reducing domestic and sexual violence in the Pikes Peak region, the nonprofit TESSA announced Wednesday.”

Read More

Oct 11

AROUND TOWN: TESSA’s 40-year anniversary helping domestic violence victims raises $225,000

“A Ruby Anniversary Gala crowd of 750 helped TESSA turn 40 at The Broadmoor, raising $225,000 toward its domestic-violence-prevention mission.”

Read More

Jul 13

CFA Investigation: District attorney says domestic violence victims need more protection

“When it comes to protecting domestic violence victims, El Paso County is behind the rest of the state. Our local district attorney says we need to make a change.”

Read More


Colorado Springs community leaders working to end culture of domestic violence

“Community leaders gathered Thursday to answer a question that plagues too many Colorado Springs families: How do we stop domestic violence?
Alarming figures were repeatedly recited – city police respond to up to 40 calls of domestic abuse daily; local domestic violence resource TESSA is called to aid about 10,000 victims in El Paso and Teller counties annually; one in four women and one in seven men will experience domestic violence in their lifetimes.”

Read More

July 6

TESSA hosts Champions of Change Summit, aims to prevent domestic violence & sexual assault

“Stopping domestic violence in our community is a huge task. So community leaders are meeting to figure out ways to prevent domestic violence and sexual assault in Colorado Springs. It’s being hosted by TESSA, a non-profit which works to help victims.”

Read More

MAY 17

TESSA introduces new initiatives to provide legal help, housing for domestic violence survivors

“A local nonprofit organization is expanding its services to better help domestic violence victims escape their abusers.
TESSA, which serves survivors of domestic and sexual violence in El Paso and Teller counties, unveiled two new programs on Wednesday: one to put families displaced by domestic violence in new homes and another to hire lawyers to secure protective orders for victims who can’t afford legal help.”


MAY 17

TESSA celebrates 40th anniversary with debut of three new initiatives

“TESSA, an organization that provides a safe haven for victims of domestic violence, celebrated its 40th anniversary Wednesday with three new initiatives. Mayor John Suthers joined County Commissioner Darryl Glenn, district attorney Dan May and others to make the announcements.”