Youth have tremendous potential. They are our future. Yet there are many current conversations about increasing the use of arrest, incarceration, and punishment for youth in contact with the legal system. Join the Center for Children’s Law and Policy as we share how we are shifting our focus and forging new connections to support the well-being of youth during challenging times.
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Jason Szanyi is the Chief Executive Officer of the Center for Children’s Law and Policy, where he works to achieve the Center’s mission of eliminating racial and ethnic disparities in the youth justice system, implementing alternatives to incarceration, and ending dangerous and inhumane conditions for youth in custody. Since joining the Center in 2009, Jason has worked with or trained officials in over two dozen states, cities, and counties. He provides long-term technical assistance to jurisdictions that are implementing systems change, in addition to engaging in research, writing, and administrative and legislative advocacy for youth justice reform. In 2015, Jason was recognized by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation as a Next Generation Champion for Change for his leadership in youth justice reform.
Katayoon Majd is an independent consultant with extensive social justice experience, as a public interest attorney, advocate, and grantmaker. Most recently, she was Director of Criminal Justice Initiatives at Borealis Philanthropy, overseeing a team managing two donor collaboratives to transform policing and pretrial justice in the adult criminal justice system. Previously, she served as Program Director for Youth Justice at the Public Welfare Foundation, where she directed grantmaking to remove youth from the adult criminal justice system, dismantle the youth prison model, and advance a community-based vision of youth justice, rooted in racial justice. Katayoon also worked as a senior staff attorney at the National Juvenile Defender Center, focusing on issues of due process, with a particular focus on ensuring fairness for court-involved LGBTQ youth. She has also represented youth in child welfare cases at the DC-based Children’s Law Center, and was a Racial Justice Project attorney at the ACLU of Northern California. In addition, she has taught courses as an adjunct faculty member at the law schools of Howard University and American University. Katayoon received her J.D. from Stanford Law School and her B.A. in Psychology from Stanford University.
Akeem Browder serves as a national catalyst and seasoned community organizer who has worked on issues of civil rights including mass incarceration, women’s rights, and community policing. He has been at the forefront of major civil rights campaigns including calling for an end to Solitary Confinement. He is the founder of Shut Down Rikers, and The Kalief Browder Foundation a not-for-profit mental health and crisis intervention. In 2017, Akeem Browder ran for the Mayor of NYC. A civil engineer by trade, however after the trauma his family endured Akeem Browder is finishing a PhD in Sociology to help those impacted by the carceral system.