Fainess Lipenga has been an active member of the National Survivor Network since 2013. In January 2023, Lipenga was appointed to serve on the U.S. Advisory Council on Human Trafficking. As a survivor of labor trafficking, she uses her voice and experience to educate the community and raise awareness.
Her mission is to prevent other survivors from being re-victimized and give them hope and courage to heal, become leaders, and achieve their dreams. Prior to her role as training advisor, Lipenga served as a consultant to the Human Trafficking Legal Center for more than five years.
Lipenga has testified before Congress regarding the challenges that survivors face, and has presented to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. She has provided training for pro bono lawyers, law students, physicians, law enforcement officials, and federal prosecutors. She has spoken at national conferences and developed expert training materials. In 2019, Lipenga testified before the Maryland General Assembly to advocate for passage of the Anti-Exploitation Act. With the help of her testimony, Maryland passed the bill, making labor trafficking an illegal act for the first time in Maryland.
Lipenga is a recipient of the Justice for Victims of Crime Award from the U.S. Attorney’s Office of Washington, DC. She believes survivor voices and leadership are essential to advocacy on human trafficking.