Dana Shoenberg serves as the Director of the National Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) Resource Center. She has been involved in the movement to achieve sexual safety in confinement since before the passage of PREA. She served as an advisor and then consultant to the National Prison Rape Elimination Commission, was among the earliest groups of DOJ-certified PREA auditors, and has educated a wide range of juvenile justice stakeholders about the requirements and opportunities associated with PREA implementation. She has helped states and localities implement the PREA Standards, apply for grants to support implementation, and share their innovations.
Over the course of her career, Dana has focused on improving conditions of confinement, reducing unnecessary incarceration, and eliminating racial and ethnic disparities in the juvenile and criminal legal systems. As a senior manager with the Pew Charitable Trust’s Public Safety Performance Project (PSPP), she worked to advance data-driven, research-based, and fiscally sound criminal and juvenile justice policies and practices. During her time at Pew, she oversaw a variety of PSPP’s portfolios, including strategy, research, grant making, and juvenile justice. Dana has also served as a court-appointed expert on conditions of confinement and juvenile justice practices. She has taught criminal justice, juvenile justice, and family law in the law schools of Georgetown University, American University, and the University of Baltimore. As deputy director of the Center for Children’s Law and Policy, she provided training and technical assistance to states and localities working to improve their juvenile justice systems and advocated for federal strategies to promote reform. Earlier in her career, she served in the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, where she investigated and, when necessary, litigated to resolve violations of constitutional and federal law in public institutions. She also served as a law clerk for the Honorable Edward N. Cahn, then Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. Dana holds a bachelor’s degree from Cornell University, a juris doctor from Yale Law School, and a master’s degree in law from the Georgetown University Law Center.