Avery Irons is a Senior Project Associate with the NCYOJ and Policy Research Associates. She provides support for the NIJ School Safety Program and directs the NCYOJ’s training development and coordination. In previous roles, Avery has led juvenile justice policy advocacy efforts for Children’s Defense Fund-NY and the Correctional Association of New York. This work has focused on increasing funding streams for community-based prevention and alternative programs, reducing racial and ethnic disparities, and strengthening protections for vulnerable populations in incarcerative settings. She has also provided training and technical assistance to systems implementing best practices for serving LGBTQ children and youth in child welfare, juvenile justice, and mental health systems. She earned a J.D. from the Columbia University School of Law and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from the University of Illinois.