Janet Reno Endowment
The Center for Juvenile Justice Reform at the Georgetown University McCourt School of Public Policy has established the Janet Reno Endowment to honor and promote the legacy of America’s first woman Attorney General. Throughout her career, Janet Reno distinguished herself as a courageous advocate for justice and equality, proving her strong commitment to improving the administration of this country’s system of justice, with a particular focus on juvenile justice and other child-serving systems, such as child welfare, education and behavioral health. Time and again, she demonstrated her dedication to bettering the lives of our nation’s most vulnerable young people. To honor this legacy, the Endowment supports efforts that:
• increase awareness about Janet Reno’s contributions to our nation’s children;
• provide resources to enhance the ability of individuals and communities to lead reforms; and
• honor exceptional women leaders.
This Endowment will help ensure Janet Reno’s dedication to supporting youth is honored and remembered, and that attention to the issues to which she devoted her career are sustained.
To honor Janet Reno’s commitment to juvenile justice reform and prevention, CJJR coordinates and manages the following activities:
Women’s Leadership Award
The Janet Reno Endowment supports the Women’s Leadership Award which recognizes women leaders who champion the causes to which Janet Reno dedicated her career. This annual award is given to a nominee who has demonstrated a commitment and ability to effect change in her community or organization to benefit youth, particularly those at-risk of entering the juvenile justice or child welfare systems. Awardees will participate in and be honored at a Janet Reno Forum.
Janet Reno Forums
The Janet Reno Forums convene leading experts, policymakers, researchers, practitioners and advocates to discuss promising practices, new research and policy reform proposals in the realms of juvenile justice, child welfare, and child and youth development. Each forum will be preceded by a white paper, commissioned for the forum, and developed by an expert in the field. This paper will be presented at the forum to help frame the discussion, the development of reforms and a post-forum action plan to affect meaningful and lasting change.
Janet Reno Leadership Fund
There are two ways the Janet Reno Leadership Fund supports communities seeking to reform the way they serve at-risk children and youth. First, the Fund supports technical assistance to implement CJJR’s Crossover Youth Practice Model, which promotes research-based decision-making as a foundation upon which child-serving systems can reform their policies and practices. Second, it provides scholarships for leaders with financial need to attend CJJR’s Certificate Programs. These periods of study use a multi-system approach to focus on research, policies and practices that better serve at-risk youth.
Future Policy Leaders
The Endowment’s Future Policy Leaders program sponsors one or more Georgetown University McCourt School of Public Policy students annually to serve as research assistants at CJJR. This effort is designed to assist students in deepening their understanding of policy and practice reform processes, as well as offer them meaningful work experiences on important issues relating to children and youth systems reform. Each Janet Reno Future Policy Leader will gain significant knowledge about juvenile justice reform, as well as a multi-systems perspective, working on a range of CJJR and Endowment projects.
Born on July 21, 1938 in Miami, Florida, Janet Reno received her A.B. degree from Cornell University and her L.L.B. from Harvard Law School where she was just one of 16 women in a class of more than 500 students. In her early career, Reno was the staff director to the Judicial Committee of Florida’s House of Representatives, led the redrafting the of state’s juvenile code as a consultant to the Florida State Senate Criminal Justice Committee and in 1978 was the first woman ever appointed to serve as the State Attorney of Miami (Dade County). As State Attorney, Reno focused her efforts on prevention programs and helped create the Miami Drug Court. She was also one of the few States attorneys in Florida who opted to retain the responsibility within the Family Court for cases of child abuse and neglect rather than relinquish these duties to the Florida Attorney General. This effort was designed to promote continuity for families, as well as continuity within family court proceedings and across family and criminal court cases.
In 1993, President Bill Clinton appointed Reno to be the first woman Attorney General of the United States. During her tenure, she reinvigorated and…