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Western Justice Center Honors Shaphan Roberts with Champion of Justice Award

The Western Justice Center honored Straus adjunct professor Shaphan Roberts at its annual Empower Gala with a Champion of Justice award. Founded in 1987, the Western Justice Center is a nonprofit organization committed to strengthening communities by growing conflict-resolution skills for youth, educators, and neighborhood partners.

Professor Roberts teaches Cross-Cultural Dispute Resolution and Mediation and serves as the director of the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Dispute Resolution Program (DRP). In this role, Roberts manages all of DRP’s initiatives, including  community mediation services and the Community Police Unification (CPU) Program, an interagency collaboration that aims to cultivate a better understanding between law enforcement and local communities. As part of his efforts in this program, he spearheaded the design of a responsivity tool that helps match mediators with mediation participants.

“We are incredibly proud of Shaphan’s innovative work to resolve conflict and usher in peace across Los Angeles County, and we are excited that our students have a chance to learn from such a transformative leader in their course,” said Sukhsimranjit Singh, who attended the event with Stephanie Blondell and Payton Silket (’20, MDR ’21).

The Straus Institute collaborated with the Western Justice Center on its first-ever youth convening summit, in which its executive director, Elissa Barrett, served as a featured speaker along with staff members Shaun Gatlin and Arturo Magana. More information on the summit may be found at Straus Youth Summit.