Criminal Justice Section  

    Criminal Justice Magazine

Criminal Justice Magazine
Summer 2000
Vol. 15, Issue 2

Questions & Answers with Former Assistant Attorney General Laurie Robinson

Interview by Myrna Raeder

Editor's Note: As part of a continuing series of one-on-one interviews with experts in the criminal justice system, former Section Chair Myrna S. Raeder, a law professor at Southwestern University School of Law in Los Angeles, talked with former Assistant Attorney General Laurie Robinson, who recently left her position with the Office of Justice Programs (OJP). Robinson, who served the longest term in that office-six-and-a-half years-spent 14 years as Section director of the ABA's Criminal Justice Section.

Q: Some of our members may not be aware of the mandate of OJP. Can you explain what programs the agency is responsible for and where they fit in the organization of the Department of Justice?

A: The Office of Justice Programs, a successor to the old LEAA (Law Enforcement Assistance Association) program, is one of the bureaus of the Justice Department (like the FBI, INS, and the Bureau of Prisons). It is the department's primary link to state and local criminal and juvenile justice, and its arm for research, statistics, and programmatic grant making. OJP includes the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), the Office of Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), the Bureau of Justice Assistance, and the Office for Victims of Crime, as well as a variety of program offices on topics like violence against women, drug courts, and corrections. OJP's budget these days is in the range of $4.2 billion, a sizeable increase from when this administration started.

Q: Is there something about the position that encourages a short term of office, and what enabled you to stay the course?

A: In the 32-year history of the LEAA-OJP program, my six-and-a-half years are apparently the longest tenure of any assistant attorney general or administrator. The main reason, I think, is that Janet Reno has herself had the longest tenure as attorney general since the days, I believe, of John Quincy Adams. Stability at the Cabinet level allows stability in the sub-Cabinet posts. Clearly, lasting six-and-a-half years in Washington in a political position with a high degree of visibility and stress is a challenge. But it was a marvelous experience. The length of my tenure, along with those of the directors of OJP components under me, like OJJDP and NIJ, enabled us to carry out an agenda in a substantive and sustained way that was useful, I think, to the state and local criminal justice field. It is difficult-I would actually say damaging-for federal agencies to have quick and constant turnover in the political leadership. Career staff often stay for 20 to 30 years. The only way, in my view, to build successful partnerships with the career staff and effectively draw on their knowledge and skills to forward your agenda is to be there for a sustained period of time. I feel very privileged to have had that opportunity under Janet Reno.

Q: Each attorney general creates an undeniable imprint on that office. What are your reflections about the Reno years?

A: I probably have a different perspective than someone who has only read the headlines in the daily press. Many people, I suspect, will only remember her for the independent counsels, Waco, and other high visibility, crisis events. But in the day-to-day work of the department, I think she has been very influential in ensuring that the state and local perspective is heard. We can't forget that over 95 percent of the criminal cases in this country are dealt with in state and local systems. Because she came from some 15 years as the state's attorney in Miami, she brought that local perspective into the Department of Justice, and I think that was very healthy. She has had extremely strong relationships with state and local law enforcement and criminal justice groups throughout her tenure-even when she was a more controversial figure inside the Beltway. I think it's that attention to the federal government's role as supporter and partner with the state and local side in addressing public safety that will be one of her legacies.

Q: Did you have a vision about what you hoped to accomplish when you became assistant attorney general and how did this accord with the political realties of the position?

A: One of the reasons I wanted to join the Justice Department under Janet Reno was because I shared, and believed in, her vision of working on a broad collaborative front to achieve healthy and safe communities. That cannot be a job left to law enforcement or criminal justice alone. It's got to reach out to include all sectors of society, from schools and the business community to public health. And it's that kind of comprehensive community-based approach that was the vision she brought from Miami and that I have tried to implement in my years at the Justice Department.

One of the ways that we were able to advance this comprehensive view of how to deal with public safety, but still deal with the political realities in Washington, was by working at the nuts-and-bolts level directly with state and local communities. One of the things I came to dislike in Washington- even though I've spent virtually my whole life close to that political scene-was the constant desire on the part of the political folks to schedule "events" to publicize the latest announcement on crime. I came to have a lot of disdain for that, since it leads too often to a "sound bite" mentality in dealing with complex issues. I thought it was more important for us to work directly with state and local communities, help fund experimentation, and deal honestly with the kinds of pitfalls and challenges that are faced.

One thing, too, that I would comment on here when we consider political realities, whether at the national or the state or local level: Our society, particularly with the intensity of media coverage of government, has almost no tolerance for failure. But, in fact, if we're going to progress in addressing crime, as we do in any other field of human endeavor, trial and error is the way we learn. I read somewhere that Thomas Edison had 99 failures before he finally invented the electric light. We should be more tolerant of elected and appointed officials who are trying to innovate in a thoughtful way, and not expect everything to turn out right the first time. If that's the way the public and the media want it, you won't find public officials ever being bold; you'll just create a group of overly cautious folks who rarely step out to try to get better results.

Q: During your tenure the budget at OJP burgeoned from $800 million to $4 billion. To what do you attribute that astounding growth and what new directions resulted from this increased funding?

A: The passage of the Crime Bill in 1994 created a number of new programs and an influx of new appropriations for OJP. The success of many of these programs has, I would say, been a joint achievement by the Clinton administration and the Republican Congress. I know that each would like to take sole credit for it, but I see it as a joint success. I think from the standpoint of the Appropriation Committees, they viewed OJP as an honest broker in fairly implementing programs, whether they had been proposed by the Clinton administration or not. I believe we had credibility in their eyes in trying to implement new initiatives in the best way possible to benefit state and local jurisdictions, and they evidenced that support in entrusting us with an increasingly large appropriation and additional programs.

Some of the new programs we funded, particularly under the Crime Bill, I think will stand as legacies of this era in criminal justice. The work on drug courts is an example, in my view, of new thinking on how "criminal justice business" can be conducted in this country, using the coercive power of the courts to affect offenders' behavior (drug use) through a carrot-and-stick approach, keeping them on a short leash through regular drug testing and frequent appearances before the judge. Drug courts are not necessarily costly. You already have the courtroom, judge, probation officer, prosecutor, and public defender. The piece you probably don't have is the mandated drug treatment. With the help of OJP's funding, there are now more than 350 drug courts in this country, with 225 more in the planning stage. There were only 12 early in the last decade. That growth was made possible by both real excitement in the field about them, and, of course, the availability of federal funding. The real question is: Do they have an impact? And the answer is "yes"-we're seeing much lower recidivism rates among offenders going through drug courts than similarly situated defendants who don't. Remember, this is a tough group. Their families, neighbors, kids, and employers have frequently given up on them. But with drug courts, we're seeing change. The final NIJ "blue ribbon" evaluations are not yet completed, but the initial feedback is extremely positive. And that's the kind of bottom-line analysis we should have in these programs.

A second example of new directions is the work on violence against women. I think there has been a profound change over the last decade in how the criminal justice system deals with domestic violence. The funding under the Crime Bill's Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), administered through OJP, has promoted the use of coordinated collaborative community-based approaches, with prosecution, law enforcement, and victims' services working together to protect victims and to hold offenders accountable. Some of that funding has gone to domestic violence shelters, some to create specialized units in prosecutor offices, some to train police or judges. Perhaps most important, the funding has served as a catalyst to bring parts of the criminal justice community together to deal more effectively with the problem. I think the VAWA money has actually helped change the culture in how the criminal justice system has traditionally dealt with family violence. It's now rare to find law enforcement, prosecution, or the judiciary treating domestic violence as simply a "family affair." But despite the progress here, there's still important work to be done.

A third area is an initiative the attorney general asked that OJP undertake in spring 1998. That was to help state and local personnel-law enforcement, emergency medical services, and firefighters-be better prepared to deal with the potential for domestic terrorism, particularly chemical and biological weapons and large-scale explosives. Since then, OJP, with generous funding from Congress, has been able to provide equipment to first responders around the country, and, equally important, set up a number of training centers from coast to coast to provide first responders with the tools and knowledge they need to deal with weapons of mass destruction. This was an interesting initiative for me because-after my many years dealing with the adjudicatory system-it was fascinating to work with and learn from the array of federal experts in this arena, including the FBI. But, should an incident of this kind occur, it will be the local police and firefighters who will be the folks initially on the scene before any federal teams arrive. In the past, state and local players haven't really been part of the federal discussion about national preparedness; I think OJP helped bring them to the table and facilitate that dialogue.

Q: Has the increased level of general funding made a difference in the direction that states have taken with criminal justice policy?

A: Even with $4 billion a year going out to the states and localities, the money from the Justice Department's Office of Justice Programs remains a relatively small proportion of state and local crime-related expenditures. It's roughly 3 percent of criminal justice spending nationally. So I think the question with which we always tried to grapple was how to best strategically focus funding in a way to increase knowledge, to share information aggressively, to spark innovation, and to help replicate successful approaches. Clearly, from the federal level, you are never going to fund, nor should you, all of the salaries, let's say, of state and local correctional officers or police. The federal government's unique role is to foster innovation through research and development and pilot projects, and to help out on a short-term basis where there are critical needs. But despite that, I do think our funds helped bring a focus to issues and approaches that might not otherwise be receiving attention in the states. Funding can be an incentive. Some examples might be new policies and work we're seeing in the states on sex offender management, mandated treatment in the system for drug-addicted offenders, creation of additional prison beds for violent offenders, attention to domestic violence and stalking, and the array of comprehensive strategies to address juvenile crime. But we should also be cautious here about the federal side taking sole credit for some of these innovations. The frontline workers in criminal justice across this country are the ones, in my view, with the best and brightest ideas right now. They usually aren't invented in federal agency conference rooms in Washington, D.C. What I think we were able to do was listen a lot, pay attention to the innovations taking place, and then try to capture, evaluate, and spread the word about effective approaches. But it is important for whomever heads OJP in the future to remember that wisdom was not invented on the banks of the Potomac.

Q: I'm curious, if you think that this level of federal funding will continue?

A: My guess is "no," and that current levels of federal funding for state and local criminal justice will not be sustained in the future. There are several likely reasons. First, demands are likely to increase in other areas like education, the defense department budget, and health care. Second, assuming that the declining crime rate over the last seven years continues, the pressure from the public-and, thereafter, Congress-to put as much federal money into crime fighting may lessen. I think the criminal justice field would be wise to anticipate that decrease and plan accordingly. But I would emphasize, too, that there are certain aspects of the federal role that are unique. State and local jurisdictions can-and over the long run should-pay for prison construction, police salaries, and other core costs for running the system. But no one local or state jurisdiction would, or likely could, fund long-term research on DNA or the causes and correlates of youth violence. No one state or local jurisdiction will collect national data on important trends relating to crime. That catalyst, technical assistance, and information-sharing role is a critical one for the feds to do. Many of these "uniquely federal" activities are not big chunks of the OJP budget, however. I remain optimistic that those core functions will continue to receive support from Congress. If anything, I think that Congress has, in recent years, through the House and Senate Appropriations Committees come to recognize the importance of research and evaluation to make sure that federal dollars are being spent in the wisest way possible.

Q: Much of what you did defies the image of a punitive criminal justice system. For example, your willingness to focus on criminal defendants as well as victims of a crime. Your sponsorship of the National Symposium on Women Offenders has already generated interest in new programs in a number of jurisdictions. Your attention to drug courts, violence against women, and restorative justice fits within this broader perspective. How were you able to accomplish this in an era best known for mandatory minimums and "get tough on crime" attitudes?

A: It's my observation these days that frontline criminal justice practitioners, and even many state and local elected officials, have become increasingly less ideological in dealing with crime issues. In my travels for the Justice Department, I rarely heard debates on mandatory minimums. What I did hear were a lot of questions about how to accomplish what needed to be done in the smartest way to get results, but within available budgets. I think this "maturing" of the criminal justice field-that's the term I give it-is a healthy development. My guess is that part of it derives from frustration with endless philosophical debates, coupled with a recognized need to make government deliver. So we found willing partners for OJP initiatives with both Democratic and Republican mayors, governors, and city councils. In the end, public safety is something everyone wants-whether they're a liberal or a conservative-and in many of our efforts, I think we succeeded by flying "under the political radar."

Perhaps another thing that helped in our ability to forward programs on issues like drug treatment and women offenders was the fact that we also supported a host of "tough on crime" law enforcement initiatives, such as building prison cells for violent offenders and supporting some 800 multijurisdictional drug task forces.

One of the things I also tried to do was bring parties together and find common ground. When we did our work on sex offenders, for example, we drew in crime victim advocates. We didn't want to support innovative community-based programs that could endanger future victims. But at the same time, the advocates recognized that many sex offenders are going to return to the community after their prison sentences are completed, and, as a society, we have to think creatively about ways to ensure their future behavior doesn't harm members of the community. That latter precept is important, and I have had some quarrel with my friends in the criminal defense bar, including my own husband, Sheldon Krantz, about our obligation to consider broad issues of community harm in crafting solutions to crime problems. We can't achieve healthy and safe communities if our whole system focuses solely on individual cases and defendants. There are broader issues that need to be considered (as we're seeing now with innovative community prosecution efforts). I think we've seen what I would call a softening along those lines. You see public defenders who are now supportive of drug courts, for example. At the beginning of the drug court movement, many defenders raised a host of due process concerns. I think the reason for this change is that they see that it can be beneficial to their clients to shed their addictions and get back on their feet. After all, many have led pretty degrading and unfulfilling lives as addicts. So I would urge us to think creatively about criminal justice problem solving and question why we've gotten ourselves stuck at times in some philosophical straitjackets.

Q: What accomplishments are you proudest of as assistant attorney general?

A: First, I'm thrilled I could spotlight some issues that had been largely ignored in the past by OJP and the Justice Department, like the need for adequate indigent defense funding and the subject of alcohol abuse and crime. With so much attention to controlled substances over the last decade, we have too often overlooked the stronger correlation between alcohol abuse and criminal behavior.

Second, I'm very proud about rebuilding OJP as an organization. It had-to be blunt-been a "backwater" in the Department of Justice for a number of years. With Janet Reno's strong support, OJP is now a central player in DOJ, a real "think tank" for innovation.

Third, I think we were able to forge a strong partnership with innovative and creative practitioners and officials at the state and local levels to foster outside-the-envelope thinking and problem solving about public safety. And, as part of that, we formed some unusual (for the Justice Department) alliances.

Finally, and I say this not entirely facetiously, a real accomplishment was never ending up with a negative story about OJP on the front page of the Washington Post. Part of that is obviously luck, but I'm glad it worked out that way.

Q: Can you give me an example of some unusual partnerships you alluded to?

A: We had more interagency agreements than ever before between the Justice Department and agencies such as HUD, Education, HHS, Labor, and others. We also created strong partnerships (for the first time for OJP) with U.S. attorneys around the country, who can be important leaders in their districts in thinking about public safety. In addition, I put a lot of energy, as did Jeremy Travis, head of our research institute, into building partnerships between researchers and practitioners. There's been a broad divide between these two "camps" for too long, but I doubt we can achieve real progress in the public safety arena without strong collaboration-and communication-between them.

Q: How would you describe the management style you brought to OJP?

A: I would describe myself as a compassionate "hard grader"-demanding hard work and bottom-line results, but also trying to draw in employees and be responsive to their needs. I established a strong working relationship with the union, set up an employee Advisory Committee, and fought with Main Justice to get our employees more benefits like a public transit subsidy and subsidization of health club membership. I also overhauled the agency's performance appraisal system to ground it on better employee-supervisor communications and continuing feedback to employees, rather than on a grading system. The performance appraisals conducted in most federal government agencies are a joke. Our system may not be perfect, but it's a lot better than it was. And at the same time, I pushed for results. I had a great senior management team at OJP-some of the best staff I've seen in my career. In one situation, we opened a training center in less than 60 days after the AG gave us the responsibility. I liked to surprise people-including our oversight committees on Capitol Hill-[with the fact] that a federal agency could turn on a dime and be as responsive as private industry.

Q: What about the structure of OJP? I gather you made proposals to reorganize it?

A: One of the frustrations the attorney general, other department leaders, and I experienced over these past years was the oddity of a statutory structure in the Office of Justice Programs that is not easily conducive to either streamlined customer service or avoiding overlap and duplication. We had a wonderful team of people working in the bureaus and offices at OJP, but, by statute, there is huge overlap in jurisdiction among the "pieces" of the agency. For example, we had five separate bureaus working on hate crime. Virtually every office addressed juvenile justice issues in some fashion (not just OJJDP). Several offices conducted evaluations and research (not just NIJ). Gang issues were addressed by four bureaus and one office. And the list could go on. For the average criminal justice practitioner, OJP is a maze of separate acronym-laden components. You'd need a road map to know who does what. Although we were able, with the help of the AG's backing and committed people, to make this structure work pretty well, it is inherently very flawed. It is not good government-or sound management-to rely on personality to make an organizational structure work. And with the likelihood that OJP's budget will go down in the future, the need for streamlining becomes even more critical.

The administration's proposal for restructuring OJP is fairly straightforward. It would place all statistical work in one bureau, all research in another, and then have subject area offices responsible for key issues and programs. State desks would be established to provide better geographically-based service to state and local criminal justice practitioners-for example, the staff on the Iowa desk would know everything OJP is doing in that state. Right now, you'd have to go to 11 or 12 different parts of OJP to find out. The proposal also envisions one "information central" to provide help to state and local jurisdictions seeking assistance, to provide "triage" for state and local customers' problems. Congress has now given its blessing to some central parts of the plan. Other pieces will be considered down the road.

It was an interesting experience working on the OJP restructure plan. The forces for the status quo in a federal agency-preservation of individual fiefdoms and cozy relationships with grantees, who frequently receive lots and lots of money through the grant pipeline under current arrangements-are very strong. But I thought it was important in the interests of good government to advance ideas for needed change, and it's very gratifying to see that some of them are now being implemented.

Q: How would you like your tenure to be remembered? In your view, what is your legacy?

A: First, with the support of the attorney general and Capitol Hill, we were able to open new avenues for creative thinking, and action, on crime. Second, that I helped shape a federal agency into one that was very responsive to its state and local constituents. From my 20 years on the "outside" with the ABA, I never forgot how frustrating it was to deal with government bureaucracies, and I reminded people in OJP about that all the time.

Q: What challenges do you face working in the political arena and did you witness changes over time that would make you hesitate to undertake that type of public service position again?

A: Politics in Washington have clearly become nastier over the last decade. Confirmation hearings, as an example, often become forums for bitter attacks against whatever is the current administration. Both parties have done this. But it's discouraging when you're trying to lure talented people to public service, and give up what are frequently lucrative careers, to tell them they may be exposing themselves to harsh attacks. It may have nothing to do with them-they could simply be pawns in whatever is the current political skirmish in Washington. Also, you have to add to this that today's 24-hour constant news cycle requires a continuous stream of breaking stories, ideally ones filled with sensation and conflict, so this fuels the drama of many of these political battles. But the optimistic side of me says that this will peak and then recede.

From my own standpoint, having recently left the Department of Justice, I'm not ready to jump back into that world, but much of that has to do with my own family considerations. I certainly would encourage people to seek out these kinds of positions. For me, serving as assistant attorney general was the opportunity of a lifetime.

Q: Do you have any other general observations about criminal justice today?

A: First, I think state and local criminal justice systems are in many regards far ahead of the federal system. For that reason, the Department of Justice and OJP, in my view, can't operate like they have all the answers. The best ideas out there-from the use of crime mapping in law enforcement to innovative ways of managing sex and drug offenders, to community prosecution work-are "home grown" innovations by state and local people on the front lines of criminal justice. The role of an agency like the Office of Justice Programs should be to aggressively encourage and foster such innovations and then share information about what's working and what isn't.

Along that line, the federal government should not be mandating how states and localities do criminal justice work. I think the "feds" need to be flexible and do a lot of listening. During my tenure, we probably held close to 100 different focus groups with constituent organizations, practitioners, and academics, as well as state and local elected officials.

Second, I think it's very promising to see so many practitioners who believe that answers to crime need to be pragmatic, practical and problem solving, not based on simplistic ideological responses. In my extensive travels for the department, I was struck over and over by the pragmatism of community police teaming up with probation officers (like in Operation Nightlight in Boston); judges working to problem solve a host of issues affecting the same family (rather than having them dealt with by separate judges in separate proceedings); communities turning to after-school programs and truancy prevention to address juvenile crime, rather than solely imposing tougher sentences. And many of these new approaches are science-based, shown to have impact, and derived from collaborations between researchers and practitioners.

Third, I'd make the observation that the criminal justice system alone can't get the job of reducing crime done. Significantly, this concept is now winning broader and broader acceptance. As an example, it's been exciting to see the growth nationally of comprehensive, community-based partnerships like the Justice Department's Weed & Seed Program. That Bush administration initiative, which we continued under Janet Reno's tenure, has grown from 23 sites in 1993 to over 200 today. It's based on the notion that a neighborhood-based program on crime should embrace both enforcement to "weed" out crime, and long-term prevention and economic development to "seed" healthy communities. And, most important, it requires all the players to be at the table-not just law enforcement and prosecution, but also social services, mental health, the schools, the business community, local foundations, housing, and job training specialists. We're seeing a lot more of those collaborations: the community police officer working with his local school superintendent; the judge working hand-in-hand with drug treatment providers; probation officers turning to job training specialists.

Fourth, I think the criminal justice system is doing a better job today in focusing more attention on offenders and their behavior. Some of the most promising efforts we're seeing around the country-from rigorous programs for drug treatment in prisons to innovative sanctions placed on domestic violence offenders to the explosive growth of drug courts-are focused on changing offenders' behaviors. From a bottom-line standpoint, that can translate to reduced crime and reduced victimization. Shouldn't that be our goal?

We're also seeing that reflected in the work on offender reentry that we started last year under the AG's personal leadership. There are some 500,000 offenders a year going back into communities from state prisons, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. From the standpoint of those communities-as well as for the offenders, their children, and their families-we need to ensure much more attention to effective reintegration. There's one thing I want to clarify here: This isn't a "soft on crime" effort to simply help offenders. In my view, the dramatic crime decreases of the last seven years are at real risk of being sustained if we ignore this issue.

And a final reflection: Our structure of multi-layered government doesn't make addressing these problems of crime very easy. We need to stay cognizant of that as we search for answers. I was often struck during my tenure at Justice by the fact that, by law, most of our block grant funds went either to the states or the cities. Comparatively little goes to counties, even though they're responsible for running jails and courts and paying salaries of district attorneys and public defenders. These layers of government were clearly-and rightfully-part of the grand scheme of our forefathers for defusing power, but we also then need much greater intergovernmental cooperation and coordination than currently exist. Human beings by nature are much more inclined to guard turf than to share power and information, so this collaboration requires a genuine commitment and a lot of hard work.

The number of criminal justice agencies alone brings enormous challenges. As an illustration, with many commentators now calling for better police training on issues like racial profiling, think about the fact that we have 18,000 separate and independent law enforcement agencies in this country. So the hurdles here are tremendous.

But overall, I'm very optimistic about the criminal justice field, and about the interesting ways in which "criminal justice business" is being conducted differently in this country today.

Q: On a more personal note, one of my earliest memories of meeting you-more than a decade ago-was at some Criminal Justice Section events, when you had a small child in tow. What are your thoughts about balancing the family with professional responsibilities?

A: Despite whatever changes have occurred, it is still tougher for women than for men. I had an extremely supportive husband and a son who seemed to enjoy the fact that his mother ran an agency that gave away money. But, more seriously, it clearly does impact the time you spend with your children. No matter what we say about trying to create family friendly work environments, the reality of high-pressure political positions is that they are very nonfamily friendly and that's just the way it is. I don't know if I have any particular words of wisdom to offer on that, except that one of the ways you get through it is to remember it's for a finite period of time. But even a few years can be a dramatic difference in a child's life. When I first went to the department, Teddy was 10-a little boy. Now he's 17, off driving somewhere, and far less concerned about whether I'm around or not!

Q: Is there anything else you would like to address?

A: Yes. During my Justice Department time, I probably drew virtually on a daily basis on my 20 years of experience with the ABA. CJS's work, spanning the whole range of substantive and procedural criminal justice issues and dealing with everything from enforcement to the judicial stage to corrections, gave me knowledge about a very, very broad set of issues. Additionally, one of the real pleasures that I had at OJP was to cross paths, which I frequently did, with people whom I had met and worked with in the Section, where we could again join forces. I am thinking here of people like you and your work on women offenders; and of the opportunity to link up with Andy Sonner, Ron Goldstock, Norm Maleng, Mike McCann, and Ralph Martin on prosecution issues; with Norm Lefstein, who moderated our large national conference on indigent defense; with Patti Puritz, Bob Schwartz, Janet Fink, and others in their work on juvenile justice; with John Greacen and Barry Mahoney on innovations in the judicial arena-this list could go on. n

In conclusion, Myrna Raeder expressed these sentiments: "I just want to end by thanking you for doing this interview, but also hope that you won't forget the Criminal Justice Section, because we appreciate your innovative thoughts and creative ways of looking at things that are so important to what we do when we try to create policy that can be embraced by the entire criminal justice community."