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Alisa Blair

Alisa Blair brings 20 years of experience as a practitioner in the criminal legal system with an emphasis on youth justice.

Alisa Blair

Alisa Blair attended the University of California, Berkeley where she  majored in Sociology with an emphasis in Race and Ethnic relations and a  minor in African American Studies. Alisa went on to attend the  University of Southern California school of law where she earned her  Juris Doctorate and the Miller-Johnson Equal Justice Award.  Ms. Blair  co-authored Race and Ethnicity as a Compound Risk Factor in Police  Interrogation of Youth, as well as A Guide to Cash Bail, published in  Chaos + Comrades.

Alisa Blair brings 20 years of experience as a practitioner in the  criminal legal system with an emphasis on youth justice. Alisa began her  legal career as public defender in Los Angeles County. During that time  Ms. Blair was trial counsel in jury trials for charges ranging from  resisting arrest to first degree murder, as well as a supervisor in the  office’s juvenile division.  Her successes were instrumental in Alisa  receiving the Judi Schecter Juvenile Lawyer of the Year award.

Alisa Blair frequently provides guest lectures at California  universities on youth justice issues and the interplay between racial  trauma and the adolescent brain.  Ms. Blair was a speaker at the at  NACDL Conference, RACE MATTERS II, on Race & Adolescent Brain  Development.  Ms. Blair also does trainings on jury selection and client  interaction for new attorneys.

During the latter portion of her career with the Public Defender’s  office, Alisa accelerated her activism as president of the Black Public  Defenders Association, Chairperson of the Law Clerk Recruitment  Committee, a member of the Public Defender Union Political and  Legislative Action Committee, member of the George Gascon for LA  District Attorney policy committee, and internal vice president for the  Pacific Juvenile Defender Center (PJDC).

After George Gascon won the election for LA County District Attorney,  Alisa joined the administration as the DA’s special advisor on youth  justice, restorative justice, and diversion. Alisa collaborated with  community organizations and other county departments to create the REDY  youth diversion pathway for minors facing serious felony charges. REDY  supports the victims of crime through a restorative justice conference  that promotes healing and accountability by the young person who caused  harm. Alisa raised $1.2 million in grant funds to support the program in  her first year with the DA’s office.

Currently, Alisa Blair is the policy and special projects director at  The Collective. She simultaneously holds the position of interim policy  director for the Pacific Juvenile Defender Center. Alisa Blair has the  unique experience of practicing law as a defender and crafting policy  for a prosecutor. Alisa did both in the largest and oldest of each type  of office in the country.  Alisa plans to continue her career supporting  communities as they heal and protect themselves.

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