Staff

James Bell : Founder, Executive Director & Board President
James Bell
Founder, Executive Director & Board President

James Bell is the Founder and Executive Director of the W. Haywood Burns Institute. The Burns Institute has worked in over 200 counties in 23 states to engage justice stakeholders and communities across the country to build equity in the administration of justice.  He has trained and addressed thousands of…

Email: jbell@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x101
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Tshaka Barrows : Deputy Director
Tshaka Barrows
Deputy Director

Tshaka Barrows is a founding member of the Burns Institute (BI). As Deputy Director he works closely with the Executive Director and Senior Management to advance the Burns Institute’s mission to protect and improve the lives of youth of color and poor youth. His work involves strategic planning, organizational development,…

Email: tbarrows@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x106
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Pamela Fong : Director of Finance & Operations
Pamela Fong
Director of Finance & Operations

Pamela Fong is responsible for the leadership, planning, and development of fiscal and operational systems at the BI. As an Oakland native, she is committed to fighting for equitable opportunity and supporting young people to create positive community change. Her expertise centers on building the financial, fundraising and technical infrastructure and capacity…

Email: pfong@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x 113
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Michael Finley : Director of Site Management
Michael Finley
Director of Site Management

Michael Finley is the Director of Site Management with the W. Haywood Burns Institute. He works collaboratively with stakeholders in several jurisdictions to reduce racial disparities in juvenile justice systems in local communities. Prior to joining the Institute, Michael was employed by Maryland’s Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention (GOCCP),…

Email: mfinley@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:(415) 321-4100 x 237
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Laura John Ridolfi : Director of Policy
Laura John Ridolfi
Director of Policy

Laura John Ridolfi is the Director of Policy for the BI. She provides technical assistance to BI sites in analyzing whether and to what extent policies and practices contribute to racial and ethnic disparities in youth justice systems. She also assists in developing local strategies to reduce disparities. Prior to the BI,…

Email: ljohn@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x108
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Malachi Larrabee-Garza : Director of the Community Justice Network for Youth
Malachi Larrabee-Garza
Director of the Community Justice Network for Youth

Malachi Larrabee-Garza currently serves as Director of the Community Justice Network for Youth at the W. Haywood Burns Institute. Before coming to the BI Malachi spent 5 years at the School of Unity and Liberation (S.O.U.L.) as the Advanced Political Education Director. Malachi co-founded the Brown Boi Project in 2006…

Email: mgarza@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x110
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Julia Beatty : Director of Grants Development, Evaluation & Communication
Julia Beatty
Director of Grants Development, Evaluation & Communication

Julia Beatty is the Director of Grants Development, Evaluation and Communication at the W. Haywood Burns Institute (BI). She brings an extensive background in racial equity policy advocacy, organizational development, community organizing, and social justice philanthropy to her work with leaders, organizations and communities. Prior to joining the BI team,…

Email: jbeatty@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x 238
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Tracy Benson : Senior Manager, Community Justice Network for Youth
Tracy Benson
Senior Manager, Community Justice Network for Youth

Tracy Benson comes to CJNY from the Midwest with over 14 years of organizing experience. She started her work fighting to break down barriers to higher education for students of color, mobilizing students to go after state and federal budgets and racial profiling legislation. After being a higher education lobbyist,…

Email: tbenson@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x115
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Steven Fritz : Senior Finance Manager
Steven Fritz
Senior Finance Manager

Steven Fritz is the Finance Manager at the W. Haywood Burns Institute. Steven joined the BI staff in 2014 after serving as a Financial Consultant to the BI. Prior to working at the BI, Steven enjoyed a twelve year career in International Development. Living and working in various African nations,…

Email: sfritz@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x131
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Anna Wong : Senior Policy Associate
Anna Wong
Senior Policy Associate

Anna Wong is a Senior Policy Associate with the W. Haywood Burns Institute (BI). She provides technical assistance to BI sites, analyzes data, assists in developing local strategies to reduce disparities, conducts policy research, and facilitates training for youth justice professionals around the country. Prior to joining the BI, Anna…

Email: awong@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x112
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Gina Peralta : Senior Site Manager
Gina Peralta
Senior Site Manager

Gina Peralta has extensive experience working with youth and families involved in the youth justice system. Prior to working at the BI, Gina worked at Public Counsel Law Center as an Education Advocate for youth involved in the delinquency and dependency systems in Los Angeles County. Gina is also a…

Email: gperalta@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x104
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Jessica Roa : Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI) Site Manager
Jessica Roa
Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI) Site Manager

Jessica is the BI’s JDAI Site Manager and is devoted to working towards social justice for youth and their families affected by the youth and adult justice systems. Prior to working at the BI, Jessica worked for the National Council on Crime and Delinquency (NCCD) conducting research, providing training, and…

Email: jroa@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x 240
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Khalid Samarrae : Policy Associate
Khalid Samarrae
Policy Associate

Khalid Samarrae has been a Policy Associate with the Burns Institute since February 2015. He was born in Baghdad, Iraq and graduated from the University of New Orleans in 2010 with a degree in Political Science and a degree in Law from Tulane University in May 2014. Khalid most recently…

Email: ksamarrae@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x 105
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Carolina Almarante-Terrero : Policy Associate
Carolina Almarante-Terrero
Policy Associate

Carolina Almarante-Terrero has been a Policy Associate with the Burns Institute since May 2015. She has acquired valuable experience in program development and implementation, grant management, data analysis, strategic planning, and research in the criminal justice field. Her experience within complex government systems, has afforded her the opportunity to develop…

Email: cterrero@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:(415) 321-4100 x 102
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Kelly Allen : Policy Assistant
Kelly Allen
Policy Assistant

Kelly Allen supports the Research domain of the Burns Institute in her role as Policy Assistant. Kelly aids in the maintenance and development of data reports and presentations for sites and provides the organization with summaries of the latest research and reports on the justice system. Kelly is a former…

Email: kallen@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x 121
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Tyler Whittenberg : Site Manager
Tyler Whittenberg
Site Manager

Tyler Whittenberg is a Site Manager with BI and works collaboratively with local system stakeholders to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in youth justice systems. Prior to working at BI, Tyler advocated for the rights of children in the youth justice and foster care systems as a Staff Attorney with…

Email: twhittenberg@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x 117
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Theresa Gonzales : Site Manager
Theresa Gonzales
Site Manager

Theresa L. Gonzales is a Site Manager working to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in criminal justice systems nationwide. She comes to the BI with the hopes of catalyzing social change through institutional and community partnerships that inform and change policy, practice, and conditions currently driving inequities for communities impacted…

Email: tgonzales@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x103
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Carlos Carmona : Bookkeeper and Contracts Administrator
Carlos Carmona
Bookkeeper and Contracts Administrator

Carlos has been a Bookkeeper and Contracts Administrator for the BI since April 2015, where he assists the Finance and Operations team with the day-to-day financial organization of the agency. Since a teenager, Carlos has worked on expanding a degree of internal equanimity which helps him facilitate a thoughtful and…

Email: ccarmona@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100 x109
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James Williams : CJNY Network Organizer
James Williams
CJNY Network Organizer

James Williams currently serves as Network Organizer of the Community Justice Network for Youth (CJNY) at the W. Haywood Burns Institute. Growing up, James witnessed many of his peers become entangled in the youth justice system at early ages. As they grew older, he witnessed many of their struggles to reintegrate…

Email: jwilliams@burnsinstitute.org
Phone:415-321-4100
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