Kalyn Dean - Women's Foundation California

Kalyn Dean


WPI State Class of 2020

Kalyn Dean is a legislative advocate and registered lobbyist at the ACLU of Northern California’s Center for Advocacy and Policy in Sacramento, where she works on statewide legislation in the issue areas of criminal justice, racial & economic justice, police practices, and technology & civil liberties.

For the 2021 legislative session, she’s working to advance AB 118 – The CRISES Act (Kamlager)- which will establish the Community Response Initiative to Strengthen Emergency Systems (CRISES) Act pilot program to scale up and fund community-based alternatives to police responses to local emergencies, SB 493 – The PROMYSE Act (Bradford)- which will implement recommendations to address failures found in a state audit of Juvenile Justice Crime Prevention Act (JJCPA) spending on programs intended to reduce juvenile crime and interaction with the justice system, requiring a percentage of JJCPA funds to go to community-based organizations rather than probation or other law enforcement, and AB 339 (Lee)- which will allow for continued remote participation in local and state hearings/meetings and expand language access, allowing for more people to participate in government meetings and decisions.

Prior to joining the ACLU, she was an associate for PolicyLink, managing the legislative priorities of the Alliance for Boys and Men of Color team. Her legislative successes include transforming California’s police use of force laws, phasing the closure of California’s Department of Juvenile Justice, restoring the right to vote for people on parole, and several policies that were signed into law to keep children in school and out of the criminal-legal system. Prior to that, she was a Program Manager of the statewide Building Trust Through Reform police accountability initiative with PICO California.

Kalyn received her bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from John Jay College of Criminal Justice. As a subject matter expert with the California Commission for Peace Officer Standards and Training, she contributed to the de-escalation and principled policing curricula. She is a 2020 State Fellow with the Women’s Policy Institute’s Criminal Justice Reform team at the Women’s Foundation of California and a current Mentor of WPI’s 2021 State Police Reform team. She serves on the California Women Rising advisory board, an initiative of the California Endowment, the Women’s Foundation California, and the First Partner of California.

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