Linda Harllee Harper is a visionary leader in social and criminal justice. On February 9, 2023, Mayor Bowser appointed her as Director of the Office of Neighborhood Safety and Engagement. On February 17, 2021, Mayor Muriel Bowser appointed Linda as the city’s first Gun Violence Prevention Director, and she continues to serve as Director of the Office of Gun Violence Prevention (OGVP). Previously she served as Senior Deputy Director to DC’s Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services (DYRS)– the city’s cabinet level agency serving youth impacted by the DC Juvenile Justice System.
Born and raised in DC with an unapologetic love for the city, its rich history, and its residents. Youth, Criminal and Social Justice Reformer. Experienced advocate and champion of positive youth outcomes for court-involved youth and their families in the District of Columbia and nationally. An experienced proven leader and change agent in juvenile justice, criminal justice, public safety, and social services with over fifteen years of progressively growing experience shaping and managing public safety responses, restorative justice policies and youth development programs to improve the lives of our undervalued, underserved, and at-promise youth and their families. Linda has moved between the non-profit and for-profit sectors, and government - either organizing for social change from the outside or reforming institutions, policies, and practices from the inside.