Board of Directors & Executive Director

Board of Directors

Dr. Teiahsha Bankhead, President

BankheadTeiahsha Bankhead, Ph.D., LCSW, is Executive Director of Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth (RJOY), a national leading organization in racial justice promotion using restorative practices and principles. Dr. Bankhead is a social justice activist, a restorative justice advocate, a licensed psychotherapist and a professor with both MSW and Ph.D. degrees in social welfare from the University of California, Berkeley.

Born to a Black radical mother during the uprising of the Watts Rebellion and coming of age in South Central Los Angeles during the embittered racial relations and social unrest of the civil rights era ignited within Dr. Bankhead a passionate commitment to social justice advocacy and transformative community empowerment. Dr. Bankhead has a commitment to racial justice, racial healing and restorative economics. She has taught racial, gender and sexual orientation diversity, theories of criminal behavior, and US social policy at the undergraduate and graduate levels. She speaks and holds circle on the subjects of School-Based Restorative Justice, Race and Restorative Justice, the Indigenous Roots of Restorative Justice, Social Justice and Restorative Justice, Truth-Telling and Racial Healing, Youth-Led and Movement-Based Restorative Justice, the School-to-Prison Pipeline, Mass Incarceration, and Restorative Cities.

Ted Lewis, Secretary

Ted Lewis Pic

Ted Lewis is a restorative justice trainer and consultant with the Center for Restorative Justice & Peacemaking, University of Minnesota   (Duluth). After being introduced to RJ on Pine Ridge Reservation in the early 1990s, Ted became the program manager for VORP of Central Kansas. Later he merged restorative dialogue with dispute resolution at Community Mediation Services in Eugene, OR. Casework included two hate crimes that reached national-level news.

Over the past 20 years Ted has provided workshops and reconciliation services for church communities. In 2016 he founded the Restorative Church website which connects RJ with restorative theology and practices for faith communities.
In 2013 Ted joined Mark Umbreit at the Center for Restorative Justice & Peacemaking where he has deepened his training and facilitation work for restorative conferencing for harming and harmed parties. Writing projects have included his co-editorship of the book, Listening to the Movement: Essays on New Growth and New Challenges in RJ.

Ted has served on the NACRJ advisory council and board since 2014. A top passion of his is to gather and share stories of deep healing and meaningful accountability. He lives in Duluth, MN, and loves the beautiful cold waters of Lake Superior!  

Lee Rush, Treasurer

Lee Rush PicLee Rush is the Executive Director of justCommunity, Inc. a non-profit organization he founded in 1999. Based in Quakertown, PA, justCommunity provides training and consultation services in the area of civic engagement, community mobilization strategies and restorative practices.

Lee is also a consultant with Designed Learning, Inc., (a Peter Block company) and an instructor for the International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP).
Lee draws on over forty-five years of business experience in the fields of education, healthcare and non-profit management. During this time, he has served in a range of positions including teaching and counseling at the secondary level, administering a day treatment program in an alternative school setting, supervising staff in a residential youth facility, directing a human resource department for a mid-sized healthcare company, serving as an Executive Director of a 501(c)(3) health foundation.

Lee earned his undergraduate degree in Criminology from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and his Masters Degree in Psychoeducational Processes from Temple University. He specialized his studies in Organizational Development and Adult Learning theory. He was named the National Prevention Advocate in 2013 and has received numerous awards and recognition, including a Mission of Service Award from the International Mankind Project and a Distinguished Service Award from the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.

Chauna Perry Finch

Chauna Pic

Chauna Perry Finch is a K-12 educator and social justice advocate who served as NACRJ’s advisory council co-chair since 2015. Chauna is also the founder of Restorative TCS (Training and Consulting Services), LLC which helps schools and hospitals use a restorative lens with themselves and each other as they strive to meet the needs of every student and patient.

Prior to starting Restorative TCS, LLC, Chauna coordinated the implementation of Restorative Practices for Milwaukee Public Schools. Some of the highlights of her work include the co-creation of the district’s high school elective courses, teacher guide, equity plan, and trauma-sensitive schools professional development modules. As a member of the NACRJ Board, Chauna is excited about working with fellow NACRJ leaders and members to ensure we maintain and provide the resources needed to thrive as an organization and meet the needs of our members.

 

Dr. Kathy Evans

Kathy Evans

Katherine Evans is an Associate Professor of Education at Eastern Mennonite University where she teaches courses in educational theory, differentiated instruction, and restorative justice in education (RJE). She is particularly interested in school and classroom climates, school discipline, and the ways in which educators participate in creating more just and equitable educational opportunities for all students, including those with disability labels and those who are marginalized for a variety of reasons, including race, ethnicity, language, economics, sexual orientation, or gender identity. Kathy holds a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology and Research from The University of Tennessee where her dissertation employed phenomenological interviews with middle school students about their experiences with in-school suspension.

While at EMU, Kathy has worked to develop EMU’s graduate program in RJE and has collaborated with teacher education faculty to embed restorative justice throughout the EMU teacher preparation program. She is the co-author of The Little Book of Restorative Justice in Education and has published articles and book chapters related to zero tolerance policies, restorative justice, and school discipline practices.

 

Thalia González

Thalia Cropped

Thalia González is a Professor of Law at the University of California College of Law where she holds a Harry & Lillian Hastings Research Chair. She is also a Senior Scholar in the Center on Poverty and Inequality at Georgetown University Law Center where she leads national research and policy advocacy on restorative justice. Professor González is the author of more than 40 academic publications and currently an editor of the North American Volume of the International Encyclopedia of Restorative Justice (forthcoming 2023). Her interdisciplinary scholarship appears in top law reviews and peer reviewed journals, book, policy reports, white papers, issue briefs, court opinions, and legislative trend analyses as well as in The Washington Post, The Atlantic, and The New York Times.

In recognition of her research, Professor González has been selected as a 2022 – 2024 Restorative Justice Research Community Research Fellow supported by the U.S. Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Assistance. In the field of restorative justice, she has been awarded research grants from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Grantmakers for Girls of Color, Annie E. Casey Foundation, Atlantic Philanthropies, and Spencer Foundation. Professor González is Co-Chair of the American Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section Alternative Dispute Resolution & Restorative Justice Committee and serves on the design and research teams for the San Francisco Truth, Justice & Reconciliation Commission.

 

Troy Williams

Troy CroppedWilliams served 25 years of his life in juvenile and adult prison facilities. While incarcerated, Williams became a certified paralegal, wrote for San Quentin News in the early days, and founded a video and the first award-winning audio production program within a prison called the San Quentin Prison Report (SQPR). Williams co-founded San Quentin’s financial literacy program and F.E.E.L. philosophy (Financial Empowerment Emotional Literacy), served as the executive director of San Quentin's Restorative Justice Interfaith Roundtable, initiated TEDx San Quentin, and spearheaded efforts to build San Quentin’s Media Lab.

After being paroled, Williams went back inside as a free man to participate in TEDx San Quentin, has served on numerous local and national committees and boards, and was awarded a Soros Justice Fellowship where he worked to create a national multimedia platform and community engagement program initially named the Restorative Media Project (RMP). RMP helped formerly incarcerated people document their experiences and engage the public.

Based on his ongoing work in restorative practices and media production, Williams founded Restorative Media Inc., a non-profit social impact organization whose mission is to give voice to the wisdom of lived experience, advance intellectual ownership, and distribute narratives that inspire social transformation. Restorative Media officially launched a Formerly Incarcerated Speaker Series in partnership with Alcatraz Island (i.e. National Parks Service) on November 5th, 2022.

Board Member

Information coming soon 

Board Member

Information coming soon

Executive Director

Joel Friesz

Picture and Biography coming soon