It Takes a Village: Community Development in Community Corrections


Tuesday, February 27, 2024
11:15 AM - 12:15 PM
Session Type: Workshop

Most everyone will say it takes a village to raise a child or strengthen a community, but what does that actually mean in practice and how do we embrace this thinking in our community corrections systems? This workshop will discuss the evolving theology implemented in the Los Angeles County Probations Department - TRI Academy - Secure Youth Treatment Facilities program. This session will discuss collaboration, restorative justice practices, critical pedagogy, education, caring ethics, and cultural relevance. It will address as a theology a methodology for systems change and reform. This session can be either run as a one hour in person session, a 90 minute in person session, or a 4 hour intensive. Depending on the selection, it may or may not have partners included in the discussion that can validate the evolving theology.


Dr. Rafael Rene Ventura, III
Deputy Probation Officer II, Los Angeles County Probation

Dr. Ventura is a Deputy Probation Officer for the Los Angeles County Probation. Prior to his work in the public sector, he worked across the full spectrum of care related to social and human services. As a system impacted individual, with a lifelong connection to justice and equity struggles faced by BIPOC peoples, he focused on work related to eliminating or navigating barriers and improving systems and uplifting the consciousness of individuals to help them overcome their circumstances. In addition to his work for the probation department, Dr. Ventura serves as a grant reviewer for the U.S. Department of Justice, has worked on developing curriculum for numerous organizations, has served as a consultant to nonprofits working with systems and system impacted people. He has worked with adults in the Los Angeles County Jail system, while he spent time teaching in each of the lockup facilities, he spent a significant amount of time in the very same facility he once held a number for. Making the irony even greater is that one of the facilities he now manages programs for, his father once resided in. Dr. Ventura has come full circle in many ways, but his focus and the purpose of this workshop comes from having experienced watching his uncle, a Brown Beret and his aunt a member of the Black Panthers, both engaged in the civil rights movements dedicate their lives to social, racial and economic justice through educational opportunity and advancement. As guiding mentors, Dr. Ventura has not only embraced their passions as his own; he blended it into his own fight for justice and system reform. This includes the importance of considering victim impacts, reducing violence and healing from its trauma; another important element as he and his family are also survivors of a street violence related murder while at Morehouse College. As a young at risk youth in his own right, Dr. Ventura graduated from a Continuation High School; eventually went back to school to earn his Bachelors Degree in Social Work from California State University, Los Angeles, a Masters Degree in Public Administration with a special emphasis on Social and Human Services, Public and Non-profit Administration from the University of La Verne, and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership with an emphasis on Service of Justice, Access and Social Change from California State University. His Dissertation, Libe