Lindsey McLendon

Senior Fellow, Criminal Justice Reform



Lindsey McLendon

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Lindsey Carlson McLendon is a senior fellow for Criminal Justice Reform at American Progress. In her current role, McLendon is working to advance humane, fair, and effective criminal legal system policy; generate sound research to help guide reform efforts; and build a more inclusive and comprehensive framework for community safety.

Previously, McLendon held the role of deputy director with the Black Women Forward Action Fund, where she helped support the work of reform-minded prosecutors and elevated key Black women leaders working to change their criminal legal systems. Prior to that, as director of research and senior legal counsel with The Appeal, McLendon led strategic communications, research, and advocacy initiatives to advance a wide range of criminal legal reforms, including in the areas of prosecutorial, policing, corrections, and sentencing policy. Earlier in her career, McLendon directed the strategic grants portfolio for The Pew Charitable Trust’s Public Safety Performance Project, overseeing a wide range of partnerships, reform initiatives, and research projects. McLendon holds a master of laws from George Washington University and earned her J.D. from Indiana University.


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