I received a B.A. in Criminal Justice in 2002, a M.S. in Criminal Justice and Criminology in 2005, earning both degrees from the University of Missouri – Kansas City. In 2012, and I graduated from Prairie View A&M University, with a PhD in Juvenile Justice. 

My research has included testing the effectiveness of peacemaking circles in reducing the negative impact associated with growing up in areas characterized by high-rates of community violence. I am currently working on utilizing that research, as well as working on other projects related to restorative justice, the impact of secondary victimization, exposure to violence, and psychological and emotional outcomes of interpersonal trauma in my research and publishing agenda. Additional research interests include juvenile delinquency, at-risk youth, educational settings, disparities in discipline, and the implications of the school to prison pipeline. 

The foundation of my research is based on a perspective of peacemaking criminology, critical criminology, and convict criminology, as well as principles of restorative justice, and I am currently working to develop research in this area. As a critical criminologist I tend to critically examine issues related to race, gender, class, and status, while as a peacemaking criminologist I continually advocate for restorative options wherever and whenever possible. 

In addition to my research interests in restorative justice and peacemaking criminology, I am also passionate about working with students and in the community on projects related to restoring harm and promoting social justice. I have been particularly active on campus, working to advance interest and participation in the practice of restorative justice practices and projects. I have engaged in numerous research and training activities to develop restorative justice and peacemaking circles on campus, and after receiving a small grant I was able to spend time training faculty, staff, and students, in the use of restorative justice and peacemaking circles. I have also developed and served as an Academic Advisor for a Restorative Justice Student Organization on two different campuses where I engage students in developing service-learning opportunities, both on campus and in the community.

Currently, I am serving as an advisor for a restorative justice student organization, as well as two other student organizations and I remain passionate about service on campus and in the community. In addition, I am actively engaged in service work on the national level as well.

Some of this work includes:

 2015 (Current) – National Association of Community and Restorative Justice 

2015 (Current) – Advisory Board Council Member

2017 (Current) Chair, Subcommittee on Research and Evaluation

2015-2016 – Member, Subcommittee on Research and Evaluation

2015-2016 – Member, Subcommittee on Higher Education

 2019 (Current) – Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences 

Member Executive Committee – Restorative and Community Justice Section

Member Executive Committee – Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Section


Newest Book Released:

January 1, 2016

A guide for anyone going through the system – and the people who love them.