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Announcing our new Executive Director, Antoinette Ratcliffe

In July, Initiate Justice’s co-founder, Taina, stepped down from her role as Executive Director to devote herself to the leadership of a new organization, Initiate Justice Action. It has been a busy three months, as we had huge shoes to fill! We reviewed many applicants and held several interviews for the role of Executive Director, and after weeks of careful consideration, we came to a decision.

The Board would like to congratulate Antoinette Ratcliffe as our next Executive Director! Antoinette knows this organization inside and out and has a clear, bold vision to move us forward and to the next level.
Antoinette brings educational and professional experience in the fundamentals of organizational management and development including a Bachelor’s Degree from CSU Fullerton in Business Management and professional experience developing small businesses. She has demonstrated success in improving administrative and operational functions, building effective workflows and operating procedures, engaging diverse groups of stakeholders, and employing creative solutions to solve complex problems. 

During the interview process Antoinette shared, “I believe that my experience will be extremely valuable to the future of our organization and our organization’s impact. Initiate Justice has established a significant presence in our California communities, and we now have an apparent need to expand our infrastructure. I am beyond excited to lead Initiate Justice, invest in the leadership of our people, and continue bringing the systemic change required to abolish prisons and empower families and communities impacted by incarceration.” 
Antoinette’s tenure with Initiate Justice began in 2019 as she started as a participant of the Institute of Impacted Leaders; at the time she was coping with the impact of having three brothers incarcerated in California state prisons. She was hired in 2020 and has since contributed to improving Initiate Justice’s Inside Mail program, Outside Organizing program, and Outside Membership base. Antoinette has also been instrumental in building the knowledge and skills of advocates throughout California. She has facilitated several Institute of Impacted Leaders cohorts, managed our Outside Organizing programs for the past 2 years, and supported a wide range of other projects and efforts throughout our organization since becoming full-time staff in 2020.

“It’s my experience with the impacts of incarceration and the criminalization of families and communities who are trying to survive on the margins of society that drives my passion to serve our communities and for abolition.”  expressed Antoinette.

The Board joins in Antoinette’s excitement for the future of Initiate Justice.

In solidarity,

Initiate Justice Board of Directors