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10 To Watch: Jordan Seaberry

Director of Public Policy and Advocacy, Institute for the Study and Practice of Nonviolence

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Name: Jordan Seaberry

Occuptation: Director of Public Policy and Advocacy, Institute for the Study and Practice of Nonviolence

Age: 27

Hometown: Chicago (Sox, not Cubs)

Community involvement: National Committee man for Young Democrats of RI; Mayor Elorza’s Advisory Council to Reduce Gun Violence; former prisoners’ rights organizer at Direct Action for Rights and Equality

“If a kid picks up a gun, chances are it’s not because he just decided one day to be violent,” says Jordan Seaberry. “What structures have been in his life that led him to a gun?” His new mission is to address that question through public policy. An artist known for his abstract paintings immortalizing Providence’s murder victims, Seaberry spent two years at the Nonviolence Institute as Homicide Victim Advocate before ascending to the newly created policy and advocacy post. “We’re taking all of the knowledge and the skill base that we have and translating it to policy change,” he says. “I know we have the recipe to keep someone at-risk alive, and to slow down someone that’s ready to pull a trigger. What we haven’t done enough of is impacting the landscape where those two individuals come from.” His work will focus on four main areas: dismantling the school-to-prison pipeline, removing barriers to reentry for people coming out of prison, empowering victims of crime and challenging the normalization of gun violence. Seaberry is confronting violence at its source.

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