Silence is Violence

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What is SilenceIsViolence

SilenceIsViolence is a campaign for peace in New Orleans, founded following the murders of musician Dinerral Shavers (d. December 28, 2006) and filmmaker Helen Hill (d. January 4, 2007). Dinerral and Helen were beloved friends, neighbors, and artists of New Orleans' Bywater-Marigny district.

Following these tragedies, Ken Foster, Helen Gillet, and Baty Landis organized a march to New Orleans City Hall to express dismay at the silence of city leadership on the issue of violent crime.

The January 11, 2007 March For Survival was attended by 5,000 concerned citizens. On that day, citizens from all parts of the city spoke directly to our leaders and each other about their fears and hopes for a safer and more equitable city-and SilenceIsViolence was founded.

The mission of SilenceIsViolence is to work toward a safe and equitable New Orleans. We provide direct victim services, creative youth engagement, and public advocacy, working with clients and partners from every sector to achieve safe, just, and thriving communities



Executive Director: Tamara JacksonTamara Jackson is a powerful force in the cultural and social justice spheres of New Orleans. As volunteer President of the Social Aid and Pleasure Club Task Force, Tamara has achieved reforms on behalf of all local parading social aid and pleasure clubs. As a victim-survivor of violence herself, Tamara joined SilenceIsViolence in 2009 as a volunteer consultant pertaining to victim services. She took over management of the SilenceIsViolence Victim Allies Project in 2010, and accepted responsibility over all SilenceIsViolence programs when the Board of Directors appointed her Executive Director in 2011.

Tamara possesses a Bachelor's Degree in Health Care Administration from the University of Phoenix, as well as a Master’s in Business Administration. Tamara received her national certification as a Comprehensive Victim Intervention Specialist in 2014. She is a certified law enforcement elder abuse instructor and a member of the Sexual Assault Response Team in New Orleans. She has conducted victim assistance and cultural diversity trainings for law enforcement officers. She has facilitated seminars and workshops on victim services, domestic violence, and cultural diversity at various organizations throughout New Orleans. Tamara worked for the State of Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals Office of Mental Health for 17 years as a Medical Specialist. She is currently a social work graduate student at the University of Southern California.

Victim Outreach Coordinator: LaRaunda Hartford has a Master's Degree in Social Work from Southern University. She is the first point of contact for victims and victim-survivors of homicide in need of SilenceIsViolence Victim Allies Project services. LaRaunda coordinates and provides grief support services for the organization.

Administrative Assistant: Courtney Meads, a student at Delgado Community College, is responsible for all organizational and clerical needs of SilenceIsViolence.

Baty Landis is the Consulting Director of Young Aspirations/Young Artists (YAYA) and the founder of SilenceIsViolence. Baty possesses degrees from the University of California at Berkeley (BA) and Princeton University (MA, Ph.D.) in Music, Fine Arts, and Historical Musicology.

Board of Directors:

Lucas Morehouse, President is an attorney with experience in criminal law in the New Orleans area. Lucas is a New Orleans native, graduated from Ben Franklin High School, and earned his law degree at LSU.

Jenny Dickherber, Vice President, social worker

Paige Valente, Secretary and Treasurer, managed SilenceIsViolence youth programs from 2011 to 2013. Paige is a graphic artist and poet, and continues to teach in some of our Peace Clinics. She works as a designer for Alexa Pulitzer Designs.

Advisory Council:

Paige Royer, activist
Steve Watson, entrepreneur

Constance Parker, clinician