On October 22, 2008 Brenda Clubine was released from prison after serving 26 years for defending herself against her abusive husband.


She now continues with her advocacy by speaking out about the dangers of abusive relationships in hopes that people will continue to make a difference in the struggle against domestic violence.


"I waited and dreamed for 26 years to once again be able to feel the water on my toes at the beach.


I realize for some that isn't a big deal. But, for the morning after my release it was the most amazing moment I could have had!"

Archive: Life in the Free World

Evening of Promise

I was given the opportunity to be a special guest speaker at the D.A.W.N. “Evening of Promise” event in Seattle, Washington. What an evening of promise it truly was. There were wonderful auction items bid on and received as their gala auction fundraiser. I had the chance to meet some wonderful people and share the importance of support groups for victims to empower these individuals to be long term, life time survivors. I want to especially thank Verizon Wireless who made it possible for me to be a part of this event and the D.A.W.N. staff from the Executive Director to each and everyone including volunteers for the amazing work you all did in putting the event together and all of the work you do each and every day, THANK YOU!! This was an evening to be remembered.

It Begins…

On Saturday, June 11, 2011 Every 9 Seconds held their first Official Board Meeting.  What an amazing group of on fire individuals. What makes it so exciting is that partnering with Sin By Silence enables Every 9 Seconds to continue to break the silence and educate people.

Each board member brings some new and refreshing ideas as to the best way we can spread the message that “any kind of abuse is wrong.”  I am truly living my life’s dream, with all the excitement and ferver of a child on their first real Christmas.

Thank you each and every one of you who have been a part of making Every 9 Seconds a success. Keep posted on my blog, on our website and on Facebook, these next several months about what is coming up.

Thanks everyone for your support!

Lights On In Des Moines

100_0458On May 17th I had the opportunity to screen Sin By Silence at Highline Community College in Des Moines, Washington. It was a beautiful day, after several days of rain, and the fact that it stopped in time for the event was fantastic. There was a good group of people in attendance. It was once again awesome to see the magic happen when people see the film, you can visibly see the fire in their spirit. They get it! It’s as if a huge light bulb goes off and they want to make that difference as well.

I met some amazing people. The staff were all so great working with me to make things smooth, which they were, and then some. Every 9 Seconds had the chance to sell their first T-shirts, woohoo! Both Sin By Silence and Every 9 Seconds continue to work together to break the silence of abuse and let everyone know, that abuse is NOT acceptable, no matter what. My life and heart continue to be touched by those I have the chance to personally meet and speak with at each event. Thank you so very much Highline Community College for being a part of making the difference in your community, with your students and also your faculty. I look forward to being brought back again.

Again, THANK YOU ALL!!!

A Dream Come True

I want to share something very close to my heart, on March 27th, 2011 I received my 501(c)3 now giving Every 9 Seconds tax deductible status,YEAH!!!!!  My dream for more years than I can begin to count was to one day gain my freedom and have the opportunity to start a non-profit to continue the work of my heart. I have been so Blessed to be able to be a part of Sin By Silence and spreading the word to break the silence and educate people not only on the dynamics of abuse but about incarcerated survivors. I wish I could truly put into words how many people, organizations, etc. have been a part of making my dream come true. Thank you everyone, keep an eye out for Every 9 Seconds website to go online. Again, it was only with the help of everyone that made it all possible.

Women Rock!

April 20th I had the opportunity to share with the ladies at the Women’s Shelter of Long Beach and go to the Youth Outreach Group. What an awesome time I had. The ladies at the shelter ROCKED in a way that is absolutely indescribable. I honor and am so proud of them all, for making the decisions they’ve made to be where they are. It is not an easy decision that is made lightly, especially when children are involved.

Speaking of children, one of the ladies had been there for I believe 20 days, and she had her baby which was about 10 - 15 days old. What an awesome group of staff at the shelter and the outreach center, these individuals are completely committed to making a difference there is NO question they care from their heart. As the young people arrived to see the screening of Sin By Silence they were given the opportunity to pick a piece of paper from a bowl open it up and as they watched the film identify with the person they chose.

Once the film was over the staff asked the young people if they had a chance to say anything to me what would they say, several of them spoke out and said things, then the staff said, well why not say it to Brenda directly. When I walked into the room, you should have seen the looks on their faces it was absolutely priceless. It was exciting to interact with these young people and hear what their questions were and concerns. WOW! I was so impressed with how young and yet how much they knew about teen dating violence and domestic violence. They made the choice to be there, they didn’t have to be there. That sure says a lot about these young people making change not only in their own lives but in the lives of their friends. They are survivors! either personally or have seen it.

I was so honored to have been able to share with them and proud of them for making the decision to be a part of making change, STOPPING THE VIOLENCE! Thanks again everyone for giving me the chance to share the afternoon with you all, I am forever touched by each and everyone of you.

With Belles On

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April 11th I left for Indiana. I arrived in Indiana and had the chance to drive into Michigan and visit family before going to South Bend on the 12th. I made the drive back from Michigan to South Bend and arrived at the St. Mary’s Inn. I will admit, this was of course after taking the wrong direction and getting lost therefore going approximately 30 more miles out of my way. The next morning I was met by Connie Adams my contact person for my events in South Bend. First thing we went and got some coffee and headed for the local YWCA where I was going to have the chance to speak some of the ladies that have been either in or through the shelter process escaping a violent relationship. As I was waiting for everyone to arrive and meeting different people I knew almost instantly it was going to really be a great morning. Sometimes I get nervous, yes I do believe it or not. Anyhow, I began by sharing some of my story and telling the ladies that I knew without any question the strength it took for them to make the decision they did to go to a shelter and that I truly honor their decision. After having the chance to speak and interact with the ladies it was time to leave to St. Mary’s College for lunch. We arrived at the school and it was evident it was lunch time as everyone was heading into the Cafeteria. Connie took me to a back room area where I was introduced briefly to the Belles Against Violence Office members and we proceeded into the Cafeteria to get our food and return to the break room where we initially met.
During the lunch hour I had the chance to get to know the young ladies of the Belles Against Violence Office and what they are hoping to accomplish by being a part of the program they have decided to be a part of. I was absolutely impressed by these ladies and how it was abundantly clear in their dialog with me that it is about “opening dialog” and letting other women know that violence against women is not only wrong, but that they wanted those who have experienced it or know someone who is, that they are their for them, that they can be accessed and really, truly care about making a difference. Determined young ladies making change! It was time to head out back to my hotel which by the way was directly across the street for a brief time since I was going to speak to an afternoon class. I arrived for the afternoon class and it was so great to have the chance to speak to these young ladies, I further challenged them to attend the eveing event and bring a friend with them that might not otherwise have attended. After speaking to the class for an hour actually a bit more, by the way, thanks you Ms. Sanali for allowing me the opportunity to speak with your class.
Once again, I returned to my hotel to prepare for the evening event. I arrived for the evening event excited and ready to set-up the table with information and the addresses for the ladies who are in the film. The film began and almost towards the end there was a snaf-foo that did not allow the DVD to finish. I began speaking and incorporated the Red Flag Campaign into the event. There was an awesome amount of attendees as well as a few young men. After the evening, during the Q&A panel which included staff from the YWCA, SOS-an aspect of the Family Justice Center and myself. There were some good questions asked and everyone was informed about the Take back the night event that Norte Dame and St. Mary’s College were considered points of light, how awesome!! I was touched by this event in a way I never imagined possible and I want to thank each and everyone who is not only a part of Belles Against Violence Office, but who made the choice to attend the event to have their voice be heard and make a difference. Hope to return again!

Celebrate the Night

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On April 7th to the 9th I had the opportunity to be a part of the Great Falls, Montana “Celebrate the Night” event. I arrived in Great Falls early on Monday and picked-up my rental car then went to my hotel to settle in. I called my contact person Autum Frey to let her know I had arrived safely and was really excited about the events of the following day. I woke up the next morning approximately 0530 and turned on the news. I heard the newscaster say that, “be careful on your drive this morning there are up to 6 foot snow drifts in some areas”, immediately I looked out my hotel room window which was facing the Missouri River and saw a winter wonderland in front of me. The water from where I stood was raging and the ground was completely covered with snow. Yes, something I don’t normally have the chance to to be in, living in California.

I arrived at the YWCA around 11:00 a.m. as they were setting-up and preparing a wonderful luncheon for members of the community and board members of the YWCA. The guest speaker for the luncheon was their own local news anchor Katie Stuckey. It was enjoyable to hear her speak and why she got into journalism and how much she supports working to make change. After the luncheon she interviewed me for the evening news regarding the evening event. I then went to the hall where the event was to held and attempted to assist in setting-up and ensuring the DVD worked properly. It was time to return to my hotel and get ready for the evening. I arrived back at the hall, ready to set-up my table of information. The snow had slowed to almost a stop but it was becoming increasingly chilly. I was so excited about the event as I would have the opportunity not only to share Sin By Silence with this amazing community but also be the one who was handing the award recipients their awards. What an honor for me on all accounts, as the ladies and gentlemen stepped-up to receive their awards after having dinner, watching the film, then hearing me speak, it was like magic. The smiles of accomplishment on their faces truly touched my heart, not to mention the resounding clapping as the recipients walked up to receive their respective awards. I do not cease to be amazed at all of the effort to make a difference in the arenas of Sexual Assault, Child Abuse and Domestic Violence, that a Community working together can accomplish. To put into words now,what this all meant to me that evening, I will be forever touched by the lives who touched mine that night. Thank you all for allowing me to be part of such an awesome event. I would love to return some time in the future, hope to see you all again. Keep up the awesome work!

Student Advocates

March 7th through the 9th I had the distinct pleasure of being in Chattanooga, Tennessee. I was there because of the Student Advocacy Team at the University of Chattanooga. I was able to do a local NPR interview at the University prior to the afternoon then able to go to the class of Professor Sara Peters, who teaches a class on violence against women. It was interesting to be there and see the beginning of the interaction with the students begin in the afternoon. The Women’s Action Council members are all students at the University of Chattanooga, and are the first team to solely schedule, and put on a Sin By Silence event. This was an absolutely amazing group of young ladies that decided to do this project and saw it through to every single detail. I was so impressed at the tenacity of this team and how badly they wanted the evening to be a success. As we went to dinner prior to the commencement of the evening event, I could feel the nervousness and yet at the same time absolute determination from the women’s action council. Once we arrived at the hall where the event would take place there was a swift orchestration of duties and straight to work they all went. When it came time for the lights to dim and the film to begin the film was opened by the Chancellor’s assistant. After the movie was shown a panel then answered many detailed and well thought questions. The panel consisted of several people, Sara Peters, Stacy Crosley, one of the local DV advocates, and a Psychologist from the school. It was so awesome to see the evening opened by the well thought out and heartfelt words of the team. There was no question the event was a resounding success!!

I am so proud of each and every one of the ladies and I hope to work with them again in the future. Thanks so much ladies for making it happen and allowing me to be a part of such a ground breaking event. Hope to stay in touch with you all. YOU ROCK!!

Power to Make Change

100_0118I was given the opportunity to screen Sin By Silence at a workshop conference in downtown Denver, Colorado. I met some amazing on fire people who are working in the fields of domestic violence prevention, protective services, empowerment services, re-entry, lawyers, students of the University and the community as well. I am looking forward to again working with many of the attendees as they return to their respective states and utilize Sin By Silence as a message to educate and foster the change necessary to make the difference. I was so proud to have this opportunity, and I too learned so much as well, being a part of this conference.

Again, I am reminded of the power of film and the ability it has to ignite the fire within each one of us to accomplish what we might have felt we did not possess, the power to make change, when in fact we do! The voices of the ladies of CWAA were heard loud and clear. I look forward to being a part of workshops and conferences in the future.

Getting Political

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WOW! If anyone would have told me that on January 7th & 8th I would have the opportunity once again to be part of the “Women In Government” Directors Conference, I would have said, you’re kidding me. Well, I certainly was there and if I thought the Seattle Regional Conference was great, the Directors Conference was fantastic. It was great to see many members of the Legislature from across the U.S. that I was so privileged to meet previously as well as the new members who have just taken Office. My spirit soared at the power and the possibilities that are ahead with all of these women. I am so honored and humbled by having the chance to share not only my personal story of triumph, but the words of the women of CWAA and their courage to make change and have their voices be heard as well. Sin By Silence has been the catalyst to educate people on all levels to the necessity of making change in other states regarding incarcerated survivors, it has also been a forum to allow the voices of survivors who remain incarcerated to be a part of making those changes, and inspiring hope for a future to “Stop the Violence”.

To all of the amazing Legislators, Staffers, Directors, and Sponsors thank you all for being a part of making a difference! I can hardly wait to be a part of the next Conference!