Eli J. & Phyllis N. Segal Citizen Leadership Program
Leah Sakala, Segal Fellow

Leah Sakala

2015 Heller MPP Segal Fellow

Leah Sakala is State Policy Manager for the Alliance for Safety and Justice where she supports campaigns through research, policy analysis, and strategy development.  Before this role, Leah was policy associate in the Justice Policy Center at the Urban Institute in Washington, D.C. for many years. She focused on criminal and juvenile justice reform and managed projects to identify and address the drivers of state prison populations, evaluate juvenile justice reform efforts, and develop strategies to broaden public safety investment to include community partners and more effectively respond to local priorities. Before joining Urban, she was a senior policy analyst at the Prison Policy Initiative. She led research projects to document the impact of mass incarceration on issues ranging from voting rights to family communication, and she worked with government officials and other stakeholders to develop policy solutions. Leah is passionate about working to improve criminal and juvenile justice policy, especially by addressing the racial and economic disparities that are predominant throughout the U.S. justice system. Originally from Massachusetts, Leah has a BA in American Studies from Smith College and dual Master’s in Public Policy and Master’s in Business Administration degrees from The Heller School for Social Policy and Management.