YEO Policy Academies 2013 Retreat Program Book - Page 11
Jakada Imani Ella Baker Center for Human Rights
Jakada Imani is the executive director of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights located in Oakland, California. During his tenure, Imani has helped to facilitate statewide policy initiatives that expose and ameliorate harms associated with the justice system. Notable achievements include the Family Connections Bills (2007 and 2008) and the Time Adds Bill (2012) that prohibits prison guards from increasing youth sentences. Through its Books not Bars campaign, the organization has closed five youth prisons in California, reducing the number of young people incarcerated from 4,000 to 300. In 2008 Imani also helped lead the mobilization of voter coalitions to defeat Prop 6, which would have put more state money into failed “lock ‘em up” criminal justice approaches. Drawing on the lessons learned through these successes, Imani is now leading the organization onto the national stage with a goal of reducing the incarceration rate by 50 percent in the next 10 years through a shift of resources into public safety and education.
Policy Council: Empowering and Educating Communities
Martin Blank Institute for Educational Leadership
Martin J. Blank is the president of the Institute for Educational Leadership (IEL) in Washington, DC. He leads IEL in its efforts to build the capacity of people, organizations, and systems – in education and related fields – to cross boundaries and