Rhode Island for Community & Justice (RICJ) is a social justice nonprofit dedicated to fighting bias, bigotry, and racism and promoting understanding among all races, religions, and cultures through advocacy, conflict resolution, and education. It is our purpose to transform communities to be more inclusive and just by empowering people to lead institutional change. We are the voice that calls people to common ground, with respect for differences but with the understanding that people of all backgrounds have common values and needs that unite them.
Fighting bias, bigotry and racism.
To promote understanding and respect across groups, RICJ believes society must acknowledge the dynamics of power and privilege and the role individuals play in creating attitudes, behavior and practices that support systems of exclusion and oppression either overt or covert.
Through its adult and youth programming, RICJ works with students, teachers, clergy, corporate and civic leaders to facilitate workshops, develop curriculum, convene race relations and inter-religious dialogues, and provide consulting on challenges related to bias, bigotry and racism. Our current focus on youth programs and juvenile justice reforms is due largely to the organizations belief that today's teens are tomorrow's leaders, and through them is the only way to create long-lasting positive change in our communities.
WHO WE ARE: OUR STAFF
Toby Ayers, PhD
Dr. Ayers is a community psychologist with doctorate from Washington State University and postdoctoral fellowship at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Executive Director since 2004, Toby leads administration, strategic planning and fundraising, organizes the Civil Rights Roundtable and founded and directs our Juvenile Justice program. She teams with Rose, Becky and RICJ youth on our diversity and workplace consulting service.
Senior Associate for Youth Programs
RICJ is thrilled that Rose Albert has re-joined our organization, first as Youth Program Manager and now as our Senior Associate. In 2018, Rose returned to RICJ after having earned her BA from Salve Regina University and her MA in Intercultural Service, Leadership and Management from the School of International Training (SIT) in Brattleboro, VT. Rose works with RICJ part time to run our Youth Programs. At the same time, Rose is an Assistant Director of Salve Regina University's Multicultural Center.
Youth Programs Coordinator
Jayleen graduated from Rhode Island College with a Bachelor of Arts in Youth Development and Gender and Women Studies. She believes in the importance of recognizing intersectionality in every individual experience of injustice and making an effort to advocate for women’s rights, queer/trans rights, immigration policy, education reform, and racial/environmental equity, both locally and at a national level. Jayleen is a proud mother to her 3 year old son Kairo who keeps her engaged daily and motivates her to do youth work.
Juvenile Justice VISTA
Adrianna assists RICJ as the Juvenile Justice Reform Coordinator through the AmeriCorps VISTA national service program. She assists the organization in capacity building sustainable community diversion for juvenile offenders and expanding the effectiveness, community awareness, and success of Juvenile Hearing Boards in the state. This work aids in combatting juvenile incarceration and redirecting youth towards needed mental health services.
Youth Programs VISTA
Tyler works with the RICJ Youth Programs staff in improving the youth programs curriculum and data management systems; as well as providing support in capacity building and sustainability efforts for the youth programs. Tyler will also work towards unifying and expanding all of the Youth Programs at RICJ. This work aids in uplifting and highlighting the youth voices in Rhode Island.
Saoirse MaherGreene (she/her) primarily focuses on supporting the Providence JHB.. Saoirse is a senior at Brown University and Research Project Manager examining funding streams supporting the RI social service system. She studies Social Trauma, a major she created to investigate how communities experience and cope with distressing events, and to consider avenues toward trauma healing and prevention. Saoirse is an identical twin and is learning to be a bike mechanic.
Board of Directors:
President: David Winoker, Belvoir Properties
Vice President: Michael Evora, Rhode Island Commission for Human Rights
2nd Vice President: Kelly Coutcher, Fidelity Investments
Secretary: Col. Steven Paré, City of Providence
Imam Farid Ansari, RI Council for Muslim Advancement
Shameem Awan, Amica Insurance
Andrew Douglass, Douglass Law
Stephanie Hague, Jewish Alliance of RI
Larome Myrick, RI Dep't. of Children, Youth & Families
Lizzie Pollock, Enspira Consulting
Emeritis Past Presidents
Dr. John McCray, University of RI (Past President)
Sam Palmisano, Amica Insurance (Past President)