Vera’s experts conduct research and analysis and develop policies and programs in a variety of criminal and social justice fields. Their varied knowledge, background, and experience enable Vera to address the full spectrum of national and local justice issues.
Susan Shah, JD, MPH has dedicated her career to improve the lives of those who are vulnerable and marginalized by laws, policies, and inadequate services. She is currently the Chief of Staff of the Vera Institute of Justice, where she advances the organization’s strategic direction and aligns organizational performance to support vitality and growth. As a member of the Institute’s leadership, she acts as a liaison to Vera’s Executive Director to problem solve and review of project concepts and ideas for investment. From 2008-2015, Susan was a program director with Vera’s Center on Immigration and Justice and guided police, justice officials, and lawyers in improving immigrants’ access to justice and safety. Also at Vera, Susan directed the Unaccompanied Children Program, which increases legal representation for immigrant children with no parents or adult guardians to assist them in deportation proceedings. Prior to joining Vera in 2006, Susan directed a cancer prevention education, research, and training program tailored for New York City’s immigrant communities and was an associate in the immigration practice group of Bryan Cave LLP. Susan earned her JD from Northeastern University School of Law, an MPH from Tufts University, and a BA in journalism from Drake University.