The Center for the Prevention of Hate Violence works with young people and adults to prevent and respond to bias, harassment, and violence, by providing training, education, and advocacy in schools, colleges, government agencies, non-profit organizations and communities.
The Center was founded by Steve Wessler in 1999. Wessler is an attorney and former lawyer with the Maine Attorney General. He also headed the Maine Civil Rights Unit. As Chief of the Civil Rights Unit, Wessler became acutely aware of the pressing need for preventative action against hate crimes. He founded the Center with a primary goal of creating programs which would interrupt the social conditions which allow the use of degrading language and harassment to escalate to violence and hate crimes.