Meet Our Speakers

Marcella Alsan, MD, PhD
Stanford Medicine

Marcella Alsan, MD, MPH, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Stanford School of Medicine and a Core Faculty Member at the Center for Health Policy / Primary Care and Outcomes Research.

She received a BA degree in cognitive neuroscience from Harvard University, a master’s degree in international public health from Harvard School of Public Health, a medical degree from Loyola University, and a PhD in economics from Harvard University. She is board-certified in both internal medicine and infectious disease. She trained at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, completing the Hiatt Global Health Equity Residency Fellowship in internal medicine. She combined her PhD with an Infectious Disease Fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital. She was an instructor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, prior to coming to Stanford. She currently is an infectious disease specialist at the Department of Veterans Affairs, Palo Alto.

Ralph Richard Banks
Stanford Law School

Ralph Richard Banks (BA ’87, MA ’87) is the Jackson Eli Reynolds Professor of Law at Stanford Law School and Professor, by courtesy, at the School of Education. A native of Cleveland, Ohio and a graduate of Stanford University and Harvard Law School (JD 1994), Banks has been a member of the Stanford faculty since 1998. Prior to joining the law school, he practiced law at O’Melveny & Myers, was the Reginald F. Lewis Fellow at Harvard Law School and clerked for a federal judge, the Honorable Barrington D. Parker, Jr. (then of the Southern District of New York). Professor Banks teaches and writes about family law, employment discrimination law and race and the law. He is the author of Is Marriage for White People? How the African American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone. At Stanford, he is affiliated with the Michelle R. Clayman Institute for Gender Research, the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and the Ethnicity, the Stanford Center for Opportunity Policy in Education and the Center for the Study of Poverty and Inequality. His writings have appeared in a wide range of popular and scholarly publications, including the Stanford Law Review, the Yale Law JournalThe New York Times and the Los Angeles Times. He has been interviewed and quoted by numerous print and broadcast media, including ABC News/Nightline, National Public Radio, The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times, among others.

Paul Butler
Georgetown Law

Professor Butler researches and teaches in the areas of criminal law, race relations law, and critical theory. His scholarship has been published in many leading scholarly journals, including the Yale Law Journal, the Harvard Law Review, the Stanford Law Review and the UCLA Law Review. He is the author of the widely reviewed “Let’s Get Free: A Hip-Hop Theory of Justice,” which received the Harry Chapin Media award.

Professor Butler is one of the nation’s most frequently consulted scholars on issues of race and criminal justice. His scholarship has been the subject of much attention in the academic and popular media. His work has been profiled on 60 Minutes, Nightline, and The ABC, CBS and NBC Evening News, among other places.

Professor Butler is a cum laude graduate of Yale, and a cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School. He clerked for the Hon. Mary Johnson Lowe in the United States District Court in New York, and then joined the law firm of Williams & Connolly in Washington, D.C., where he specialized in white collar criminal defense. 

Victor Carrion, MD
Stanford Medicine

Dr. Victor G. Carrion is the John A. Turner, M.D. Professor and Vice Chair of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University and Director of the Stanford Early Life Stress and Pediatric Anxiety Program. He is in the faculty at both Stanford University School of Medicine and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. His multidisciplinary research on the behavioral, academic, emotional, and biological late effects of experiencing trauma has led to the development and implementation of effective new interventions for treating children who experience traumatic stress. Using Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as an anchor, Dr. Carrion is investigating, through longitudinal studies, the effects of stress on developmental physiology and brain development and function.   

Dr. Carrion is a Co-Founder of the Center for Youth Wellness in San Francisco, where he served on the Board and chaired the Scientific Advisory Council. In 2011, Dr. Carrion was appointed by California’s Senator-Elect Kamala Harris to the Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission of the State of California, where he served as chair. Dr. Carrion has received awards from the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the National Association for Research in Schizophrenia and Affective Disorders, the National Institute of Mental Health and the Silicon Valley Business Journal. 

James Forman, Jr.
Stanford Law School, Yale Law School

James Forman Jr. is a visiting Professor at Stanford Law School and a Professor of Law at Yale Law School. He is a graduate of Atlanta’s Roosevelt High School, Brown University, and Yale Law School, and was a law clerk for Judge William Norris of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and Justice Sandra Day O’Connor of the United States Supreme Court. He teaches Constitutional Law, a seminar on Race and the Criminal Justice System, and a clinic called the Educational Opportunity and Juvenile Justice Clinic.

Amanda Geller, PhD
New York University

Amanda Geller is Clinical Associate Professor of Sociology at New York University. Dr. Geller’s research examines the interactions between criminal justice policy and practice, public health, and socioeconomic disadvantage, and their joint effects on urban neighborhoods, families, and individuals. She focuses primarily on the administration of justice related to police-public interactions, and on the role of incarceration in urban families. She also researches methodological issues surrounding data collection related to both incarceration and police-public interactions. She is an affiliate of the NYU Population Center and Director of the NYU MA Program in Applied Quantitative Research.  She has a Ph.D. in Social Policy Analysis from Columbia University, and an M.Eng. and B.S. in Operations Research and Industrial Engineering from Cornell University.

Keith Humphreys, PhD
Stanford Medicine

Keith Humphreys is a Professor and the Section Director for Mental Health Policy in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University.  He is also a Senior Research Career Scientist at the VA Health Services Research Center in Palo Alto and an Honorary Professor of Psychiatry at the Institute of Psychiatry, King's College, London.  His research addresses the prevention and treatment of addictive disorders, the formation of public policy and the extent to which subjects in medical research differ from patients seen in everyday clinical practice.

Dr. Humphreys has been extensively involved in the formation of public policy, having served as a member of the White House Commission on Drug Free Communities, the VA National Mental Health Task Force, and the National Advisory Council of the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.  During the Obama Administration, he spent a sabbatical year as Senior Policy Advisor at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. He has also testified on numerous occasions in Parliament and advises multiple government agencies in the U.K.  

Nikki Jones, PhD
UC Berkeley

Nikki Jones is an associate professor in the Department of African American Studies. Her research, writing and teaching focuses on the experiences of African American men, women and youth with the criminal justice system, policing and various forms of violence. She is also a faculty affiliate with the Center for the Study of Law and Society and the Center for Race and Gender at Cal.

Professor Jones’ areas of expertise include urban ethnography, race and ethnic relations and criminology and criminal justice, with a special emphasis on the intersection of race, gender, and justice. Professor Jones has published three books, including the sole-authored Between Good and Ghetto: African American Girls and Inner City Violence (2010), published in the Rutgers University Press Series in Childhood Studies. Her research appears in peer-reviewed journals in sociology, gender studies, and criminology. Her next book, based on several years of field research in a San Francisco neighborhood, examines how African American men with criminal histories change their lives, and their place in the neighborhood once they do. Her current research draws on the systematic analysis of video records that document routine encounters between police and civilians, including young Black men’s frequent encounters with the police. Before joining the faculty at Cal, Professor Jones was on faculty in the Department of Sociology at UC-Santa Barbara (from 2004-2013). She earned her Ph.D. in Sociology and Criminology from the University of Pennsylvania.

Suzy Loftus, JD
San Francisco Sheriff's Department

Suzy Loftus currently serves as Assistant Chief Legal Counsel to San Francisco Sheriff Vicki Hennessy.  Previously, she served as President of the San Francisco Police Commission where she prioritized improving the Department’s response to violence against women and children, expanding the use technology to solve crime and working to make streets safe for all who use them – pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists.  Under her leadership, the Police Commission revised the Police Department’s use of force policy and instituted body-worn cameras to increase transparency and improve police-community relations in San Francisco.  A dedicated community advocate, Suzy received the James Irvine Leadership Award for California in 2014 for her work in San Francisco’s Bayview Hunters Point neighborhood to build and found the Center for Youth Wellness, an innovative non-profit working to heal children suffering from the impacts of violence and chronic adversity.

Recently, Suzy served as General Counsel California Department of Justice, overseeing impact litigation in areas that were a top priority to Attorney General Kamala D. Harris.  Suzy also served as the Assistant Director of the Division of Law Enforcement, overseeing the state's forensic and digital evidence collection and analysis.  Prior to her work at the Department of Justice, Suzy served as a San Francisco prosecutor where she prosecuted domestic violence, elder abuse and firearms cases.  Suzy is a native San Franciscan, and along with her husband Tom Loftus, is raising 3 daughters in San Francisco’s outer sunset neighborhood. 

Howard Pinderhughes, PhD

Howard Pinderhughes, PhD  is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences at UCSF. He is the author of Race in the Hood: Conflict and Violence Among Urban Youth which examined the dynamics of racial violence in New York City. Dr. Pinderhughes has been conducting research on youth violence and violence prevention in the SF Bay Area communities since 1989. Dr. Pinderhughes worked with Alameda County to produce the Alameda County Blueprint for Violence Prevention and with the City of San Francisco to co-author their Comprehensive Violence Prevention Plan in 2007. Dr. Pinderhughes is a lead partner with the UNITY Initiative (Urban Networks to Increase Thriving Youth), a CDC funded initiative on violence prevention in the 30 of the largest cities in the United States. He has worked with Boston, Cleveland, Chicago, Minneapolis, Seattle, Oakland, Baltimore, Milwaukee and Los Angeles on their development and implementation of comprehensive violence prevention plans.  Additionally, he served as Co-PI for the Center on Culture, Immigration and Youth Violence Prevention.

Currently, Dr. Pinderhughes is working on a Kaiser funded study of the impact of violence on communities and has developed a groundbreaking framework to understand community trauma and inform strategies to reduce violence and increase community resiliency. Dr. Pinderhughes’ forthcoming book, “Dealing With Danger:  How Inner-City Youth Cope with the Violence that Surrounds Them,” examines how urban youth in the Bay Area experience various types of violence and the effects of trauma from exposure to interpersonal and structural violence on both these youth and their communities. 

Charles Ramsey
Lindy Institute, Drexel University

Charles H. Ramsey is the former Commissioner of the Philadelphia Police Department. Prior to assuming that post in January 2008, he had served as Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia (MPDC) from 1998 to early 2007.

A native of Chicago, Illinois, he joined the Chicago Police Department as an 18-year-old cadet in 1968. After serving six years as a patrol officer, he was promoted to sergeant in 1977. He was appointed a lieutenant in 1984 and became captain in 1988. He served as Commander of the Narcotics Section from 1989 to 1992 before spending two years as a Deputy Chief of the police force's Patrol Division. In 1994, he was appointed Deputy Superintendent.

In 1998, he became the MPDC chief. During his tenure, he was involved in several high-profile cases as chief of police in Washington D.C., such as the Chandra Levy murder investigation. He has also been in the spotlight since the September 11 attacks focused attention on security issues around Washington, D.C.

Ramsey is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Lewis University in Romeoville, Illinois.

He has served as an adjunct professor at Lewis University and Northwestern University, and is currently a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Lindy Institute, Drexel University.

Victor Rios, PhD
University of California, Santa Barbara

Victor Rios is a Professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He received his PhD at the University of California, Berkeley in 2005.  

Professor Rios’s research agenda focuses on the role of social control in determining the well-being of young people living in urban marginality; tracking the social consequences of the punitive state and punitive social control, across institutional settings; and examining young people’s resilience and responses to social marginalization. He is the author of five books including, Punished: Policing the Lives of Black and Latino Boys (2011); Project GRIT: Generating Resilience to Inspire Transformation (2016); and Human Targets: Schools, Police, and the Criminalization of Latino Youth (2017).

Professor Rios has worked with local school districts to develop programs and curricula aimed at improving the quality of interactions between authority figures and youths.  Using his personal experience of living on the streets, dropping out of school, and being incarcerated as a juvenile—along with his research findings—he has developed interventions for marginalized students aimed at promoting personal transformation and civic engagement. These programs have been implemented in Los Angeles, California (Watts); juvenile detention facilities; and alternative high schools. Dr. Rios has been featured in the Chronicle of Higher Education, Ted Talks, the Oprah Winfrey Network, and National Public Radio. His TED Talk “Help for kids the education system ignores” has garnered over 800,000 views.

Jeff Rosen
Santa Clara County, Office of the District Attorney

Jeff Rosen took office as District Attorney of Santa Clara County on January 3, 2011.

District Attorney Rosen is an experienced prosecutor and a recognized leader in criminal justice reform. His mission for the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office is to vigorously pursue justice in a way that is fair and treats everyone with respect. His core values are service, hard work, transparency and integrity.

Since taking office, Mr. Rosen created an innovative and nationally acclaimed Conviction Integrity Unit to investigate innocence claims and implement the most professional practices in criminal prosecution. In addition, Mr. Rosen established a Cold Case Unit to investigate unsolved murders and a misdemeanor diversion program for low-level offenders.

Claude Steele, PhD
UC Berkeley

Claude M. Steele is an American social psychologist and a Professor of Psychology at UC Berkeley. He has also served in several major academic leadership positions: for the past two years as the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost at UC Berkeley, the three years before that as the I. James Quillen Dean for the School of Education at Stanford University from 2011 – 2014, and before that as the 21st Provost of Columbia University.

He is best known for his work on stereotype threat and its application to minority student academic performance. His earlier work dealt with research on the self (e.g., self-image, self-affirmation) as well as the role of self-regulation in addictive behaviors. In 2010, he released his book, Whistling Vivaldi and Other Clues to How Stereotypes Affect Us, summarizing years of research on stereotype threat and the underperformance of minority students in higher education.

David Studdert
Stanford Law School/Stanford Medicine

David M. Studdert is a leading expert in the fields of health law and empirical legal research. His scholarship explores how the legal system influences the health and well-being of populations. A prolific scholar, he has authored more than 150 articles and book chapters, and his work appears frequently in leading international medical, law, and health policy publications.

Professor Studdert joined Stanford Law School faculty in a joint appointment as Professor of Medicine (PCOR/CHP) and Professor of Law. 

Before joining the Stanford faculty, Professor Studdert was on the faculty at the University of Melbourne (2007-13) and the Harvard School of Public Health (2000-06). He has also worked as a policy analyst at the RAND Corporation, a policy advisor to the Minister for Health in Australia, and a practicing attorney.

Professor Studdert has received the Alice S. Hersh New Investigator Award from AcademyHealth, the leading organization for health services and health policy research in the United States. He was awarded a Federation Fellowship (2006) and a Laureate Fellowship (2011) by the Australian Research Council. He holds a law degree from University of Melbourne and a doctoral degree in health policy and public health from the Harvard School of Public Health.

Garen Wintemute, MD, MPH
UC Davis

Dr. Wintemute is the founding director of the Violence Prevention Research Program (VPRP) and holds the Baker–Teret Chair in Violence Prevention at the University of California, Davis. He was among the first to study firearm violence as a public health problem, and firearm violence remains the primary focus of his research and policy work. He practices and teaches emergency medicine at UC Davis Medical Center and is a professor of emergency medicine at the UC Davis School of Medicine. His current research focuses on violence risk factors and interventions to prevent violence, particularly among firearm owners. Trained initially as a biologist at Yale University, Dr. Wintemute attended medical school and residency at UC Davis and studied epidemiology and injury prevention at The Johns Hopkins University.