Vidhya joined Vera as a senior program associate in 2008. In this role, she designs and manages an array of projects aimed at reforming juvenile justice systems. In recent years, her work has included planning and conducting diagnostic assessments of juvenile justice systems; reviewing promising programs, policies, and funding mechanisms for serving youth at different system points; and providing implementation assistance to government partners pursuing new initiatives. Among her projects have included managing CYJ’s assistance to Governor Paterson’s Task Force on Transforming Juvenile Justice in New York State; developing an intake and assessment process to match youth placed in local custody to private facilities in NYC; and creating an online resource center to help jurisdictions rethink their approach to working with youth who have engaged in noncriminal behavior (such as being truant or running away).
Before joining the center, Vidhya worked at the U.S. Government Accountability Office, where she conducted evaluations of different federal workforce and transit programs. Earlier in her career, she served as a youth policy advocate at the Neighborhood Family Services Coalition, where she directed a campaign to secure funding for summer jobs in New York City. Vidhya has a bachelor's degree in economics and international studies from Northwestern University and a master's degree in public policy from George Washington University.