BOARD OF MENTORS

The Board of Mentors serves in a similar capacity as a "Board of Directors."  They are a group of trusted, experienced mentors that give guidance to the coordinating team.  On the first Tuesday of each month, the coordinating team proposes that months actions to the Board of Elders and symbolically requests their permission to move forward with said actions.  Further, they serve in an Ex Officio status by providing resources, access to relationships and guidance.

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HOUSTON JUSTICE COORDINATING TEAM

Durrel K. Douglas Founder, Executive Director Durrel, 30, grew up in Houston's "South Park" neighborhood where he saw firsthand the systemic inequity of our society's infrastructure, education system, and criminal justice system.  After a 5-year stint as a prison guard, he dedicated the remainder of his life toward creating a world where fewer people who came from neighborhoods like his ended up behind bars. He moved to Austin to work at the State Capitol as a legislative aid during the 2011 Legislative Session on bills aimed at reducing recidivism and increasing opportunities for those behind bars upon release. In 2012 Douglas moved to Dallas where he led a campaign to end the school to prison pipeline by eliminating practices like suspending students in kindergarten. In 2015 he led a successful grassroots campaign aimed at making the grand jury system in Texas more diverse and inclusive. NEWSCLIP HERE Durrel has previously served as Chair of the Houston NAACP Community Coordination Committee, on the Board of Directors for the League of Women Voters-Houston, was a 2013 LWV Rising Star, received the 2017 Black Love Matters award from SEIU Afram-Washington, 40 under 40 Politicos of Houston in 2015 and the 2017 Community Trailblazer Award at the Teamsters National MLK Day Gala. He lives in Houston where his hobbies include learning to play the upright bass, eating soul food, laughing with friends and hosting a bi-weekly podcast. Contact Durrel: ddouglas@houstonjustice.org, 832.857.5737

Durrel K. Douglas

Founder, Executive Director

Durrel, 30, grew up in Houston's "South Park" neighborhood where he saw firsthand the systemic inequity of our society's infrastructure, education system, and criminal justice system.  After a 5-year stint as a prison guard, he dedicated the remainder of his life toward creating a world where fewer people who came from neighborhoods like his ended up behind bars.

He moved to Austin to work at the State Capitol as a legislative aid during the 2011 Legislative Session on bills aimed at reducing recidivism and increasing opportunities for those behind bars upon release.

In 2012 Douglas moved to Dallas where he led a campaign to end the school to prison pipeline by eliminating practices like suspending students in kindergarten.

In 2015 he led a successful grassroots campaign aimed at making the grand jury system in Texas more diverse and inclusive. NEWSCLIP HERE

Durrel has previously served as Chair of the Houston NAACP Community Coordination Committee, on the Board of Directors for the League of Women Voters-Houston, was a 2013 LWV Rising Star, received the 2017 Black Love Matters award from SEIU Afram-Washington, 40 under 40 Politicos of Houston in 2015 and the 2017 Community Trailblazer Award at the Teamsters National MLK Day Gala.

He lives in Houston where his hobbies include learning to play the upright bass, eating soul food, laughing with friends and hosting a bi-weekly podcast.

Contact Durrel: ddouglas@houstonjustice.org, 832.857.5737

Elisabeth Johnson Deputy Executive Director, and Director, Political Justice Project Elisabeth Johnson is a graduate of Southern University and A&amp;M College in Baton Rouge, La where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the Nelson Mandela School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs. She received her first internship while in Louisiana working for former Louisiana state senator Walter Boasso when he ran for Governor in 2007. While in college, she also volunteered with other politicians such as Mayor-President Melvin “Kip”Holden (Baton Rouge-2005), Chris Bell (Texas-2008) and many others.Immediately after graduating in 2009, she was afforded the opportunity to work for former Mayor of Houston, Bill White, when he ran for Governor of Texas against Rick Perry in 2010. Currently she is obtaining her Masters in Public Administration from Texas Southern University and in the process of self publishing her first book, Wake Up: A Despairing Cry to the Black Community, which will come out Fall 2017. She is a member of HBAD (Houston Black American Democrats), the Faith Events Community Director for the Young Adult committee of the NAACP and continues to volunteer, organize and mentor throughout her community.

Elisabeth Johnson

Deputy Executive Director, and

Director, Political Justice Project

Elisabeth Johnson is a graduate of Southern University and A&amp;M College in Baton Rouge, La where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the Nelson Mandela School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs. She received her first internship while in Louisiana working for former Louisiana state senator Walter Boasso when he ran for Governor in 2007.

While in college, she also volunteered with other politicians such as Mayor-President Melvin “Kip”Holden (Baton Rouge-2005), Chris Bell (Texas-2008) and many others.Immediately after graduating in 2009, she was afforded the opportunity to work for former Mayor of Houston, Bill White, when he ran for Governor of Texas against Rick Perry in 2010.

Currently she is obtaining her Masters in Public Administration from Texas Southern University and in the process of self publishing her first book, Wake Up: A Despairing Cry to the Black Community, which will come out Fall 2017. She is a member of HBAD (Houston Black American Democrats), the Faith Events Community Director for the Young Adult committee of the NAACP and continues to volunteer, organize and mentor throughout her community.

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Terrance Edmond

Director, Economic Justice Project

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Charnelle Thompson Director, Voter Engagement It was in The Greater 5th Ward Community of Houston Texas that Charnelle Thompson learned the value of education, and the importance of community enrichment through the examples made by her family. Upon Graduating in 2014 from The University of Texas at San Antonio with an earned bachelors of Science degree in Mathematics, Charnelle worked for a brief stint at Worthing High School as a Mathematics Fellow before stepping into her careers as an auditor. With the desire to continue to contribute to the success of the students, Charnelle has begun to develop an SAT prep program for students in low performing High schools to: increase the percentage of students of color who score above criterion along with and the amount of offered excellence based programs to students in underserved areas. Today she is the Director of Voter engagement for Houston Justice and is devoted to championing for the newest initiative; “Project orange”, which focuses on providing accessibility for voting, and voting registration options to eligible voters in the Harris County Jail. Charnelle is no stranger to voter registration efforts; during her Presidency of UTSA’s Black Student Union, Charnelle led the schools efforts in voter registration during the fall of 2012. This in turn resulted in the University being ranked 2nd in voter turn–out amongst Colleges and Universities. It is no surprise that the young girl who watched her beloved Great Grandmother serve as a Precinct Judge in Pct. 160 has become a young woman charging others to get registered and get to those very same polls her great-grandmother was responsible for operating those many years ago. Charnelle currently resides in Houston Texas and continues to look for ways to collaborate and engage others in voting initiatives and educational excellence for students.

Charnelle Thompson

Director, Voter Engagement

It was in The Greater 5th Ward Community of Houston Texas that Charnelle Thompson learned the value of education, and the importance of community enrichment through the examples made by her family. Upon Graduating in 2014 from The University of Texas at San Antonio with an earned bachelors of Science degree in Mathematics, Charnelle worked for a brief stint at Worthing High School as a Mathematics Fellow before stepping into her careers as an auditor.


With the desire to continue to contribute to the success of the students, Charnelle has begun to
develop an SAT prep program for students in low performing High schools to: increase the
percentage of students of color who score above criterion along with and the amount of offered
excellence based programs to students in underserved areas.


Today she is the Director of Voter engagement for Houston Justice and is devoted to
championing for the newest initiative; “Project orange”, which focuses on providing accessibility
for voting, and voting registration options to eligible voters in the Harris County Jail.

Charnelle is no stranger to voter registration efforts; during her Presidency of UTSA’s Black Student Union, Charnelle led the schools efforts in voter registration during the fall of 2012. This in turn resulted in the University being ranked 2nd in voter turn–out amongst Colleges and Universities.


It is no surprise that the young girl who watched her beloved Great Grandmother serve as a
Precinct Judge in Pct. 160 has become a young woman charging others to get registered and get
to those very same polls her great-grandmother was responsible for operating those many years
ago. Charnelle currently resides in Houston Texas and continues to look for ways to collaborate and engage others in voting initiatives and educational excellence for students.

Your Name Here? Chief of Staff This volunteer position-holder will serve as the equivalent of a COO.  Being an all-volunteer organization, the task of keeping everyone accountable, attention to detail, and consistency make this the most important position on the coordinating team.  Though experience is not necessary, devotion, organization and consistency are all required.   ***The selected applicant should expect to devote at least 5 hours per week.   Work will range from menial tasks like sending reminder emails about meetings-to- holding feet to the fire behind delegated tasks that are almost due.  The Chief of Staff will coordinate the agenda of the weekly coordination call with the Executive Director. Further, this volunteer will serve as the organization's co-treasurer with the Deputy Executive Director.  In this role, they will be responsible for publishing our monthly financial report, which will be public, showing what we've raised/spent as an organization. Selections will be made by Sept. 1, 2017 This is a great opportunity for someone who has operational/administrative experience wanting to get involved in building the movement. 

Your Name Here?

Chief of Staff

This volunteer position-holder will serve as the equivalent of a COO.  Being an all-volunteer organization, the task of keeping everyone accountable, attention to detail, and consistency make this the most important position on the coordinating team.  Though experience is not necessary, devotion, organization and consistency are all required.  

***The selected applicant should expect to devote at least 5 hours per week.  

Work will range from menial tasks like sending reminder emails about meetings-to- holding feet to the fire behind delegated tasks that are almost due.  The Chief of Staff will coordinate the agenda of the weekly coordination call with the Executive Director.

Further, this volunteer will serve as the organization's co-treasurer with the Deputy Executive Director.  In this role, they will be responsible for publishing our monthly financial report, which will be public, showing what we've raised/spent as an organization.

Selections will be made by Sept. 1, 2017

This is a great opportunity for someone who has operational/administrative experience wanting to get involved in building the movement. 

Your Name Here? Communications Coordinator This volunteer position-holder will lead our organization's internal/external communications.  Though experience is not necessary, devotion, organization and consistency are all required.   ***The selected applicant should expect to devote at least 3 hours per week.   Work will mostly include participating in the weekly Tuesday evening conference call/meeting of the coordinating team, updating social media content, updating the website, creating digital content. Selections will be made by Sept. 1, 2017 This is a great opportunity for someone looking to learn more about community organizing and movement building that has graphic design/social media skills.  

Your Name Here?

Communications Coordinator

This volunteer position-holder will lead our organization's internal/external communications.  Though experience is not necessary, devotion, organization and consistency are all required.  

***The selected applicant should expect to devote at least 3 hours per week.  

Work will mostly include participating in the weekly Tuesday evening conference call/meeting of the coordinating team, updating social media content, updating the website, creating digital content.

Selections will be made by Sept. 1, 2017

This is a great opportunity for someone looking to learn more about community organizing and movement building that has graphic design/social media skills.