Marc Schindler, Executive Director
Marc comes to JPI from Venture Philanthropy Partners, (VPP), where he served as a partner for the D.C.-based nonprofit philanthropic investment organization. As a partner, he led VPP’s Social Innovation Fund youthCONNECT initiative -- an innovative philanthropic effort aligning public-private capital, evaluation, and high performing non-profit organizations to improve the education, employment and health outcomes of 14-24 year old disconnected youth in the National Capital Region.
Prior to joining VPP Marc served as General Counsel, Chief of Staff and Interim Director for the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services (DYRS), Washington, D.C.’s cabinet-level juvenile justice agency with a budget of $90 million dollars.
Marc has worked on justice system issues from a number of varied perspectives, and is indeed returning to his roots. He joined DYRS in 2005 as one of a team of reformers who worked to transform that agency into a nationally acclaimed and innovative department that reduced the use of incarceration in favor of community based solutions, with its approach grounded in the principles of Positive Youth Development. DYRS’ reforms were recognized by Harvard’s Kennedy School, naming the department one of the “Top 50” government programs in 2008 in its prestigious Innovations in American Government Awards competition.
Prior to joining DYRS, Schindler served as a Staff Attorney from 1997 to 2005 with the Youth Law Center (YLC), a national public interest civil rights law firm dedicated to protecting the rights of young people in juvenile justice and child welfare systems nationwide. While at YLC, Marc litigated cases on behalf of incarcerated youth and children in the child welfare system, served as co-chair of the national Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention Coalition in Washington, D.C., was a founding member of the Justice for DC Youth Coalition, and taught children’s rights at American University’s Washington College of Law. He has served on numerous boards and commissions including the ABA’s Juvenile Justice Committee, the DC Police Complaints Board, the Campaign for Youth Justice, the Center for Children’s Law and Policy, the Maryland Governor’s Task Force on Juvenile Justice and the Committee for Baltimore’s Children. He previously worked as an Assistant Public Defender in Baltimore's juvenile court representing children in delinquency proceedings, where he was the recipient of the Cahill Award for outstanding commitment to service and chaired the Juvenile Law Committee of the Baltimore City Bar Association. Schindler is a recognized expert in the field, providing commentary in the national media, including on CNN and NPR, and is also the author of numerous articles and book chapters.
Marc is a graduate of Yale University and the University of Maryland School of Law. He lives in Washington, D.C. with his wife and two children.
Paul Ashton, Research and Grants Coordinator
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Prior to joining JPI, Paul spent time as a sexual assault victim advocate and conducting research examining intimate partner violence in the LGBT community. Paul’s experience with victim issues led him to author JPI’s white paper: Moving Toward a Public Safety Paradigm: A Roundtable Discussion on Victims and Criminal Justice Reform. His other JPI publications include Gaming the System, The Education of D.C., Rethinking the Blues, and Fostering Change. Paul has also served on the policy committee of the Delaware HIV Consortium – working to educate the Delaware State Legislature on the need for increased funding to address homelessness and HIV. And currently he serves on the Board of Directors for the Rainbow Response Coalition, a grassroots advocacy organization working to address LGBTQ intimate partner violence in the D.C. metro area. Paul received his Bachelor's in criminology from The Ohio State University and a Masters in criminology from the University of Delaware.
Spike Bradford, Senior Research Associate
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Spike Bradford is a data analyst, project manager, and educator with experience in criminal justice, drug policy and public health. He serves as JPI's juvenile justice expert having authored the well-publicized report, Common Ground: Lessons Learned from Five States that Reduced Juvenile Confinement by More than Half. He has been appeared on various news outlets including Minnesota Public Radio and Midday with Dan Rodricks, Baltimore, and has been selected as a panelist for various events and convenings including the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers' National Advocacy Call on Developing Legislation series.
Prior to joining the JPI team, Spike lived in Kenya and Zambia where he taught English and applied his data analysis skills to public health issues, especially related to women’s health. Spike’s work at JPI includes: Working for a Better Future: How Expanding Employment Opportunities for D.C.’s Youth Creates Public Safety Benefits for All Residents, For Better or For Profit: How the Bail Bonding Industry Stands in the Way of Fair and Effective Pretrial Justice, and Crime, Correctional Populations and Drug Arrests Down in 2011.
Spike has also worked at the Department of the Attorney General of Hawai`i to evaluate a variety of criminal and juvenile justice initiatives and oversee the collection of data for the Uniform Crime Reports. Spike holds a Master of Education from Bowling Green State University and a Master of Arts from the University of Hawai`i.
Zerline Hughes, Director of Communications
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Zerline interacts with media and helps execute JPI's traditional and social media communications strategies. Crafting press releases, outreach strategy and writing and editing content published by JPI, Zerline merges her communications and criminal justice reform expertise to the JPI team. She helped produce "Blocking the Exit," a short documentary on the parole process in Maryland for people serving life sentences which aided in successful policy reform. She has also successfully pitched news stories to national media including the New York Times, Washington Post, the Economist and National Public Radio. Prior to joining JPI, Zerline was the Communications Manager for The Sentencing Project, a national nonprofit focused on criminal justice reform by way of research and advocacy. Zerline has also worked as a public relations consultant, newspaper reporter and freelance writer for publications including the Boston Globe, Baltimore Sun, Ventura (Calif.) County Star and Dance Magazine. Zerline earned a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and photography from Howard University in Washington, D.C., and a Master of Science in communication management from Simmons College in Boston.
Kellie Shaw, Operations Coordinator
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Kellie ensures that the JPI office runs smoothly by overseeing day-to-day operations. She also helps organize JPI signature gatherings including our annual September Bail Month event and most recently, the "Incarceration Generation" national book tour. She comes to us with many years of experience including work as Service Administrator for Canon Business Solutions, Inc. and Webster Fredrickson & Brackshaw, LLP, both in Washington, D.C. Her operations experience also includes a position as Legal Secretary at Bryan Cave, LLP in New York City, and work in administration at Ashcraft & Gerel, LLP in Washington, D.C. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor's degree in communication studies, with a minor in Marketing, at the University of Maryland University College, College Park.
Keith Wallington, Project Manager
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Keith, Project Manager, leads JPI's state-based projects, the Models for Change juvenile justice initiative and is intimately involved with the Greater Baltimore Grassroots Criminal Justice Network which works on Maryland criminal justice initiatives including re-entry, child support for returning citizens, and life without parole issues. Keith pens opinion editorials and writes and delivers testimonies before various policymakers in an effort to incite change. Keith joined JPI in 2010. Prior to joining JPI, Keith worked as an organizer for the Alliance for Retired Americans, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the health and economic security of older Americans. As a field organizer, he helped to build and charter states to the national Alliance and educate the public about the health and economic concerns of older Americans. After working as an organizer, he served as the Director of Community Outreach for the Alliance for Retired Americans where he helped build the organization through group affiliation. Keith also worked as a field organizer for Fight Crime: Invest in Kids (FCIK), where he recruited and educated top law enforcement officials about the importance of early education and evidence-based programs as proactive investments to fighting crime including meetings with Congressman John Spratt (SC), U.S. Budget Committee Chairman, to discuss investments in education as a way of reducing future crime. Keith graduated from American University with degrees in biology and psychology.