We’re happy to announce exciting new changes in our membership in staffing!
Please welcome Rehana Lerandeau, a former chapter member of Critical Resistance Oakland now based in Atlanta, to our Programs Team for staff as our National Membership Coordinator. CR is thrilled to see Rehana move into this leadership role.
Additionally, Shirley Leslie, who has been CR’s Development Coordinator for the last three years, has been hired as CR’s new Development Director. Congrats Shirley!
Read messages from Rehana and Shirley below.
Welcome message from Rehana:
I’m thrilled to be joining Critical Resistance’s (CR) staff as the National Membership Coordinator after over 5 years of volunteer membership with the organization.
My organizing with CR for 4 years based in Oakland, CA and almost two as a national member based in Atlanta, GA has provided me with the opportunity to build with our powerful membership base across the US. I look forward to working with CR’s members, our external coalition partners, and our advisors and elders to create and sustain strong programs, practices, and political education that fortifies our ability to fight to abolish the prison industrial complex (PIC) through strategic campaigns and projects.
During my career thus far, I’ve worked to establish pathways to meaningful work for formerly incarcerated people, developed anti-racist political education for employers, and coached and developed marginalized job seekers and colleagues. Through these experiences I’ve developed skills that I look forward to bringing to CR’s membership development programs including project organizing, political education programing, facilitation and mediation, capacity building, and project management.
In this political moment in our movement for PIC abolition, it’s critical for us to be in our best fighting form, for us to find ways to balance sustainability, building power, and rest, and for us to continue driving the ideology and practice of abolition as the common sense road to liberation for all people. The strength of our movement lies in the strength of our people, and I’m honored and humbled to do my part to develop, sustain, and support the work of Critical Resistance’s organizers.
Message from Shirley:
After three years of being on Critical Resistance (CR)’s Development team, I am excited to step into the role of National Development Director!
Over the past few years, I’ve learned so much about fundraising as organizing, and the importance for movement organization to be resourced by and for community. I have built solid relationships with CR members, grassroots donors, movement partners, foundation funders, event attendees, and supporters from afar – and I genuinely look forward to deepening these relationships. Experiences and learnings alongside CR’s amazing network of organizers and partners have strengthened my commitment to prison industrial complex (PIC) abolitionist organizing and politics, as well as increased my adeptness at resourcing our work amidst an ever-shifting landscape.
I’m immensely grateful to the current CR Development team, as well as those who crafted the infrastructure for me to step into this role strongly and confidently.
I am excited to continue growing and engaging our network of support so that CR can sustain the crucial organizing we continue to do – whether those are efforts to close California prisons, end immigrant detention in New York, uplift the expertise of imprisoned organizers, or create valuable tools that bolster anti-PIC campaigns and projects globally.
If we’ve ever shared space at a Freedom Friday event in North Oakland, webinar, or giving circle; if we met at a mail night pre-covid; if you’ve received emails from me over the years; or if I haven’t yet had the pleasure of crossing paths with you – I look forward to connecting with you during my new chapter within CR!
– Shirley Leslie
National Development Director