For Immediate Release
Shakira Pumphrey previously served as Senior Policy Advisor to Texas Speaker Joe Straus
AUSTIN, TX – Effective November 16, 2015, the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition (TCJC) announces Shakira Pumphrey as its new Policy Director. In this role, Ms. Pumphrey has strategic and operational responsibility for generating and coordinating TCJC’s research and policy work.
Prior to joining TCJC, Ms. Pumphrey served as Senior Policy Advisor to Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives, Joe Straus, where she advised the Speaker and his executive staff on policy issues related to corrections, criminal jurisprudence, juvenile justice, defense, veterans, and county affairs. She also served as the primary liaison to legislators, legislative staff, constituents, advocates, agencies, and correlating legislative committees.
“Shakira has been an asset to me and to the Texas House,” Speaker Straus said. “She cares deeply about our state and about criminal justice policy, and I’m confident that she will continue to succeed in this new role.”
Before working in the Texas House of Representatives, Ms. Pumphrey was a Civil Rights Investigator to the Arkansas Fair Housing Commission. She has also served as a consultant to various nonprofit groups, including an Arkansas nonprofit organization for children left behind due to parental incarceration. She was instrumental in framing the organization and driving national conversations regarding evidence-based programs for families impacted by incarceration.
Ms. Pumphrey holds a Bachelor of Science in Sociology from the University of Central Arkansas, a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and a Juris Doctorate from Southern University Law Center in Baton Rouge.
“I am delighted to be joining the TCJC team,” said Ms. Pumphrey. “Over the last three sessions, I have had the pleasure of working with some of Texas’ finest criminal justice minds. I am honored to continue the advancement of the TCJC mission, alongside Executive Director, Leah Pinney, and the prodigious TCJC staff. Without question, TCJC has a proven record of successfully influencing smart justice policies that safely reduce the state’s costly over-reliance on incarceration. Together, we plan to build on that record.”
Ms. Pumphrey will be leading the efforts of TCJC’s current policy team, which includes Elizabeth A. Henneke, J.D.; Jay Jenkins, J.D.; Lindsey Linder; and Douglas Smith, M.S.S.W.
“I cannot imagine a better choice for TCJC’s first-ever Policy Director than Shakira Pumphrey,” said Executive Director Leah Pinney. “Her expertise in justice policy and her drive to create safer, healthier Texas communities and families will make her an unparalleled leader. I am thrilled to welcome her to TCJC and I look forward to the policy wins that she and our policy team will accomplish together.”