Social Justice Advocate Carmen Perez Announced as Alumni Weekend Keynote Speaker!

UC Santa Cruz alumna Carmen Perez returns to Santa Cruz for Alumni Weekend 2017, giving our Keynote talk, launching the weekend. The event will take place at the Cocoanut Grove in Santa Cruz, on Friday, April 28th starting at 7p.

Perez (Rachel Carson College, pre-psychology) is a criminal justice reform activist and organizer, executive director of juvenile justice nonprofit The Gathering for Justice, and one of the national co-chairs of the Women’s March on Washington.

After the death of her 19-year-old sister when she was 17, Perez began dedicating her life to creating programs and initiatives that would help transform the lives of young people. She’s been an activist ever since.

After graduation, Carmen worked for Barrios Unidos in Santa Cruz, dedicated to providing non-violence training and re-entry services for the incarcerated. In 2006, she became a bilingual probation officer with the Santa Cruz County Probation Department. With an all-female intensive caseload, she worked to provide appropriate programs and re-entry services for young women in the juvenile justice system.

In 2008, Perez became national organizer of The Gathering for Justice and two years later was named executive director. In November 2013, she founded Justice League NYC, a task force of juvenile and criminal justice advocates, experts, artists, and formerly incarcerated individuals brought together to build “Growing Up Locked Down” (GULD) a three-day juvenile justice conference.

Perez is recognized as an expert in juvenile and criminal justice, and system accountability, and has been featured widely in the media. She recently testified as a criminal and juvenile justice reform expert before the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing.

She has recently been making a historic name for herself, becoming one of a handful of co-chairs organizing the unprecedented Women’s March, the day after the 45th Inauguration. The march mobilized hundreds of thousands of people in the United States, and an estimated 20 million worldwide, united in their affirmation of human rights and equal protection for all.

Space is limited so register now to save your spot!

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