Deana Lewis

 Deana Lewis is a graduate student in the Educational Policy Studies Department at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).  Her research interests include Black girlhood studies, school to prison pipeline, and youth incarceration.  More specifically, Deana is interested in Black girls’ experiences within the school to prison pipeline.  Her professional and academic careers have focused on youth education and empowerment.  Additionally, Deana teaches and develops curricula that engage race, gender, sexuality, and education for high-school to college students.  Currently, Deana is a local ethnographer for an international youth community organizing project that is interested in the political development and experiences of youth leaders in community organizations.  A trained circle keeper, Deana is an auxiliary member of the Chicago Girl Talk Collective, a collective of women who create art projects with the young women detained at the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center (JTDC) in Chicago.  She holds a B.A. in English from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.A. in Educational Policy Studies from Stanford University.  An accomplished public speaker, Deana has never met a microphone she didn’t like.




Lara Brooks has worked with street-based and homeless youth, survivors of violence, and queer and trans youth since 2001. Lara is the former Director of the Broadway Youth Center (BYC), a “one-stop-shop” model of care for LGBTQ and young people experiencing homelessness in Chicago and coordinated the basic needs drop-in program for five years before becoming the Director in  2010. Paying special attention to the intersection of trauma, harm reduction, oppression and resilience, Brooks trains locally and nationally on issues related to harm reduction, program design, and community accountability practices within a social service context. Currently, Lara is a consultant and organizer.

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Keisa Reynolds

Keisa Reynolds is a writer and educator from Richmond, Calif. They are a certified rape crisis counselor in Illinois and California and have extensive training in other areas including domestic violence, child abuse, community violence, and trauma. They have a BA in Cultural Studies from Columbia College and studied at UC Berkeley's Goldman School of Public Policy as a 2014 PPIA Fellow.