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The Open Society Foundations Announce the 2022 Soros Justice Fellows

NEW YORK—The Open Society Foundations today announced the 2022 cohort of Soros Justice Fellows. The fellows, a mix of emerging and established leaders, include authors, lawyers, journalists, podcasters, professors, grassroots organizers, artists, and policy advocates.

The 18 fellows come from all over the country, and will develop new ways of tackling the challenges rising from mass incarceration, youth criminalization, surveillance, immigration policies, racial disparity, and police violence to ensure accountability in the U.S. criminal justice system.

Among the projects they will be working on: a podcast exploring the incarceration and criminalization of young people of color, art that will spur debate around police surveillance and its harm on our society, investment vehicles that help investors align their capital with their values, a social justice–oriented space for people of color interested in the healing potentials of psychedelics, access to ballot boxes for those in jail, and media tackling the systemic causes of criminalization.

“Our public institutions are in need of repair and reform. The racial disparities in our criminal justice system are well documented,” said Adam Culbreath, senior team manager at Open Society-U.S. “We are proud to work with the 2022 class of Soros Justice Fellows, who will bring fresh ideas and leadership towards revitalizing our country’s systems of democracy and justice and move the conversation forward.”

To carry out their work, fellows receive a stipend ranging from $57,500 to $127,500 for full-time projects lasting between 12 and 18 months. They will also have access to leadership development training, networking, and other professional support.

“If we do not fix the inequalities that are so prevalent in our justice system, our country will continue to spiral towards collapse,” said Christina Voight, program manager at Open Society-U.S. “I’m looking forward to working with the 2022 class of Soros Justice Fellows to see what new and innovative ideas they bring to the table.”

The 2022 fellows join more than 400 other individuals who, since 1997, have received support through the Soros Justice Fellowships as part of a broader effort to curb mass incarceration and ensure a fair and equitable system of justice in the United States.

2022 Soros Justice Fellows

Arti Walker-Peddakotla will create tools through an abolitionist framework that work to defund the police and reinvest funds back into the community.

Chris Watts will create art that will spur debate around police surveillance and its harm on our society.

Christina Hollenback will build investment vehicles for capital investors to invest in community-controlled public safety and vital infrastructure and stop prison financing.

Emile DeWeaver will write a book titled Ghost in the Prison Industrial Machine that examines the norms that undermine the movement to end racial oppression in the criminal legal system and offer counter-narratives and strategies.

Ifetayo Harvey will create a coalition of praxis-aligned organizations and individuals who want to shape the future of psychedelics and end the war on drugs.

Irene Franco Rubio and Katherine Owojori will explore the incarceration and criminalization of young people of color in our public school system through a #SchoolsNotPrisons podcast, YouTube series, and other media.

Kate Uyeda will work to ensure those detained in jails in Tennessee and elsewhere can exercise their right to vote.

Kerwin Pittman will develop a toolkit that will empower people directly impacted by incarceration to dismantle racism in North Carolina’s criminal justice system.

Latisha Vincent will highlight the names and tell the stories of families most impacted by parole denials.

Lisa Maria Rhodes will scale ALAS, a training program for teachers to support students facing immigration court or criminal district court, to a nationwide organization that trains high school educators across the country.

Luci Harrell will work to dismantle policing programs that exacerbate the homelessness crisis in Atlanta.

Nicole Nguyen will bring taboo conversations into the public space and inform abolitionist organizing.

Shakeer Rahman will work to dismantle policing programs that exacerbate the homelessness crisis in Los Angeles.

Tiera Howleit will help elevate the voices of people of color whose lives have been impacted by the criminal justice system.

Pauline Rogers will train, educate, and organize incarcerated and formerly incarcerated individuals and their families about the family reunification process in Mississippi and influence change to the child welfare system.

Yasmine Arrington will produce a podcast with interviews and debates with Black and brown youth voices on issues and solutions to the criminal justice system, juvenile probation, reentry, and recidivism.

Zachary Siegel will write news stories and narrative audio stories that highlight public health and harm reduction approaches to overdose deaths.

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