The National Juvenile Justice Network (NJJN) recently selected Yamanda Wright, senior data and policy specialist at CJI, as a Fellow for the 2019 Youth Justice Leadership Institute (YJLI). She is one of nine people who make up this year’s prestigious fellowship program.

The YJLI is a yearlong leadership development program for youth justice reform advocates. Each year, NJJN welcomes a diverse class of advocates and organizers of color, with demonstrated leadership acumen, to continue their advocacy efforts to bring broad, positive change to juvenile justice systems.

“I’m thrilled about this opportunity to join the NJJN as a YJLI fellow representing CJI,” said Yamanda. “Through this fellowship, I hope to expand my network of like-minded advocates and look forward to connecting with, and learning from, a wider network of people of color doing this important work at different organizations across the United States.”

Over the next year, Yamanda and her cohort will attend two in-person training sessions, participate in distance learning activities, and complete an advocacy or organizing project. They will gain deeper knowledge about juvenile justice system structures and trends, learn about effective advocacy and organizing techniques, and work with mentors who are also advancing meaningful system reforms.

“Yamanda’s continued passion and desire to lead in juvenile justice reform efforts both in and outside of CJI is inspiring and heartening,” said Christine Cole, CJI’s executive director. “Her selection as a fellow is well deserved for the impactful work Yamanda continually achieves as an emerging leader in the field.”