The 50-year-old Minneapolis nonprofit specializes in adult criminal and juvenile delinquency defense, restorative justice and youth advocacy. In recent months, it has placed a focus on pro-bono legal representation for political protesters.
Along with ACLU Minnesota, the center raised concerns about the original third-degree murder charges filed against Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin in the George Floyd murder case, urging the attorney general to enhance the charges. On June 3, Chauvin’s charge was upgraded to second-degree murder.
Davis is taking over as the organization’s first LGBTQ executive director. She is credited with creating the center’s Youth: Education, Advocacy, Restorative Services program.
Andrew Gordon is the new deputy director for Community Legal Services. For eight years, he has led the center’s adult Community Defense Program. Now he will supervise legal work throughout the organization.
Lori Saroya is the new deputy director of Advancement and Operations, a new executive role. She will direct finances, human resources, IT, communications and fund development.
Since Floyd’s death on May 25, the center’s lawyers have received more than 200 calls about protest-related arrests, the center says.
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