The Northern Hills Diversion initiative is all about making a positive impact in our communities across three counties: Lawrence, Meade, and Butte.

This initiative is all about giving young folks a second chance and helping them become responsible and awesome members of society. We’re not just about punishment; we’re about rehabilitation and accountability.

We’re bringing the whole community together, working hand in hand with the justice system. It’s like a big, supportive team effort to guide these young individuals toward taking ownership of their actions and turning their lives around. We’re all about helping them make a positive mark on the world.

Isn’t it inspiring to see how a program like this can change lives and make our communities better places to live? It’s all about believing in the power of redemption and giving our youth the tools they need to shine bright in the future!



Assist teen offenders in recognizing that they are responsible for their behavior


Teach that the consequences they experience are a direct result of their own actions


Promote a positive attitude toward authority by showing respect, courtesy, confidentiality and dignity to all individuals


Provide a forum for teens to experience the judiciary system and, in the process, reduce the likelihood of youth committing repeat offenses


Establish positive relationships between the community and its youth, the results of which are better understanding and communication


Alexandra Lux – Director

Alexandra “Lexi” has lived in the Black Hills for most of her life. She has received her Bachelor of Science Degree in political science and history, Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management, and Executive Master of Public Administration from the University of South Dakota. She has spent over ten years working in and around law enforcement.  During this time, Lexi assumed many roles including receiving training in current trends in drug use and distribution, domestic violence, crisis intervention, DARE, sexual assault response, and enjoyed volunteering for the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics.

In May 2019, Lexi assumed the role of Director of Lawrence County Teen Court, now doing business as Northern Hills Diversion. Lexi is passionate about investing in the younger generation to create a brighter future. Lexi serves as the president of the Lawrence County Coalition, vice president of the Deadwood-Lead Optimists Club, and volunteers with TeamMates and Junior Achievement. In her free time, Lexi enjoys reading, running with her “soul puppy” Belle, and spending time with her husband and children.

Verla Little – Diversion Coordinator

Verla graduated from Black Hills State University with a major in Biology.  She attended South Dakota State University as a graduate student working on her masters in Botany with an emphasis on germination ecology.  She began her career in law enforcement as a Communications Officer (dispatcher) and progressing to Reserve Officer, Patrol Officer, and Corporal.  Verla loved working with youth and advocating for justice involved youth.  As a D.A.R.E Officer she worked with youth in the schools of Spearfish and their teachers.  In July 2022, Lawrence County Teen Court offered her the opportunity to work part time with youth in Lawrence County.  In January 2023, Lawrence County Teen Court partnered with Meade County to offer alternative diversion opportunities for Meade County Youth.  In April, Verla retired from 26 ½ years full time in Law Enforcement to work full time with justice involved youth in the Northern Hills of South Dakota.   Verla is passionate about restorative justice for youth and advocating for justice involved youth to have opportunities for improving their situation.

Christine Allen – Teen Court Coordinator

Christine has been working in the Black Hills in Human Services and other non-profit community work for over 15 years. Christine’s specialization areas are mental health, crisis management, and community resources. Christine is passionate about working together with community partners to work towards positive long-term changes on an individual and community level.  She is excited for her new role as part of the Northern Hills Diversion team and looking forward to seeing the program continue to positively impact the lives of teens all over the Northern Hills. 

Christine is active in her community serving as a volunteer at the Homestake Opera House, the Lead Area Chamber of Commerce, and the TEAMMATES program. She enjoys reading a good book while camping with her husband in the Black Hills.

Our Programs


Teen Court