VOL. XXIX NO. 1
Thanks to funding from the Public Welfare Foundation, Atlantic Philanthropies, Löben Sels/RembeRock Foundation, and the True-Brown Foundation, NCYL is expanding its Juvenile Justice Reform Project. This expansion includes increased involvement in Wyoming and Arkansas, where NCYL is currently working, and the launching of new juvenile justice reform work in other states, including California.
Joining NCYL’s juvenile justice team are attorney Patricia Soung and policy advocate Mikaela Rabinowitz. They will work with Senior Attorney Pat Arthur and staff attorney Fiza Quraishi, a former Equal Justice Works fellow at NCYL. Fiza is currently on maternity leave, returning to NCYL in October on a part-time basis.
Patricia Soung will join NCYL on June 1. She is currently an attorney with the Children and Family Justice Center, Northwestern University School of Law, where she challenges juvenile life without parole and other extreme sentencing practices, as well as wrongful convictions of youth, through community organizing, public education, coalition-building, and litigation. Patricia received her JD from Northwestern University School of Law and her BA from Stanford University, where she earned several distinctions for her commitment to public service and advocacy in anti-poverty projects. Before law school, Patricia worked to increase the capacity and support of youth social justice efforts nationally as Director of Education and Outreach for the Funders’ Collaborative on Youth Organizing in New York and as a Tom Ford Fellow at the Tides Foundation in San Francisco. She serves on the board of the Highlander Research and Education Center, and has served on numerous advisory bodies and boards for education reform and youth justice efforts.
Before joining NCYL, Mikaela Rabinowitz served on the Research Advisory Council of Illinois’s Disproportionate Justice Impact Study, where she studied racial disparities in the state’s criminal justice system and recommended legislative and policy remedies. She is currently completing her PhD in Sociology at Northwestern University, and working at NCYL part-time. Mikaela’s dissertation examines the impact of pretrial detention on defendants’ case outcomes and on their lives independent of the criminal justice system. Mikaela earned her BA, Magna Cum Laude and with Honors, from Columbia University, and her MA from the University of Chicago.
NCYL assists carefully selected juvenile justice reform efforts that it believes have genuine potential for success. The Center’s priority is to reduce the number of youth subjected to harmful and unnecessary incarceration and expand effective community based supports. NCYL uses a variety of approaches in its juvenile justice reform work, including developing relationships with government officials and key stakeholders to ensure NCYL’s place at the table -- or behind the scenes -- to help shape sustainable reform. NCYL retains experts to assist with various aspects of reform efforts and to provide technical assistance as needed.