Careers in Human Rights

The Center for the Human Rights of Children and the Civitas ChildLaw Center present the 4th Annual Careers in Human Rights event. On March 13th, 2019, join us for an evening of discussion (4-5pm) and a reception (5-6pm). The event will feature a panel of three local professionals who use their careers to further human rights initiatives in their communities. This year, our panelists will be speaking with a focus on youth violence and how the right to be safe from violence and trauma corresponds to a right to health for children under the Convention on the Rights of the Child.


Our panelists include Noni Gaylord-Harden, Elizabeth Clarke, and Amanda Crews Slezak. Noni Gaylord-Harden is an associate professor in Loyola's Department of Psychology. She has focused primarily on the investigation of stress, coping, and psychosocial functioning in African American adolescents, examining the effects of stressors in multiple contexts on depression and anxiety in urban, ethnic minority youth. Her recent work focuses on exposure to community violence as a stressor for youth in urban communities, using findings of this research to advocate for strengths-based, trauma-responsive services and interventions for adolescents exposed to violence.

Elizabeth (Betsy) Clarke is the founder and President of the Juvenile Justice Initiative, which advocates to reduce reliance on incarceration, enhance fairness for all youth and develop a comprehensive continuum of community-based resources throughout the state of Illinois. Prior to developing the Juvenile Justice Initiative, Betsy served as Juvenile Justice Counsel for the Office of the Cook County Public Defender, and served in the Office of the State Appellate Defender. Besty is the co-founder and director of the Midwest Juvenile Defender Center, a co-founder of the North American Council on Juvenile Justice, an advisory board member of the National Juvenile Defender Center, and a co-founder and active member of the National Juvenile Justice Network.

Amanda Crews Slezak is a supervising attorney with the National Immigrant Justice Center’s Asylum Project, where she represents adults, children, and families seeking asylum and other relief before U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and the Chicago Immigration Court. Amanda also represents non-detained individuals deemed incompetent to represent themselves through the National Qualified Representative Program, and she co-chairs the American Immigration Lawyers Association Chicago Chapter’s Asylum Office Liaison Committee. She was previously a legal supervisor with NIJC’s Immigrant Children’s Protection Project. Amanda graduated from Loyola University Chicago School of Law where she was a Civitas ChildLaw Fellow. Prior to law school, Amanda served for two years as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Cape Verde working in education and community development. She received her Bachelor of Arts in international studies from Baylor University.