Teiahsha Bankhead, Ph.D.

Executive Director
Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth (RJOY)
1203 Preservation Park Way Suite 200
Oakland, CA 94612

Email: teiahsha@rjoyoakland.org
Web: http://rjoyoakland.org/staff/

Born to a Black radical mother during the uprising of the Watts Rebellion and coming of age in South Central Los Angeles during the embittered racial relations and social unrest of the civil rights era ignited within Dr. Bankhead a passionate commitment to social justice advocacy and transformative community empowerment.

Social Work Professor at California State University, Sacramento and Executive Director of Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth (RJOY), Teiahsha Bankhead is a social justice activist, a restorative justice advocate, and a licensed psychotherapist with both MSW and Ph.D. degrees in social work. 

Dr. Bankhead has a commitment to racial justice, racial healing and restorative economics. She has taught racial, gender and sexual orientation diversity, theories of criminal behavior, and US social policy at the undergraduate and graduate levels. She teaches, speaks and holds circle on the subjects of School-Based Restorative Justice, Race and Restorative Justice, the Indigenous Roots of Restorative Justice, Social Justice and Restorative Justice, Truth-Telling and Racial Healing, Youth-Led and Movement-Based Restorative Justice, the School-to-Prison Pipeline, Mass Incarceration, and Restorative Cities.
Over the last years she has worked to increase racial equity building approaches in restorative justice practices. In June of 2017 she co-chaired, with Fania Davis, the largest, most diverse and most far reaching RJ conference in US history, the Sixth National NACRJ conference in Oakland with the theme, “Moving Restorative Justice From Margins to Center: We’re the Ones We’ve Been Waiting For,” which included over 1,300 registered attendees, 120 formerly incarcerated adults and 80 youth. With her committee she raised over $470.000 in revenues for this conference a full one-fourth of which was from foundation grants. This was 500% of the foundation support of the next most high yielding conference. 

Teiahsha has over 20 years of experience as Director of Program Development and Contract Compliance at several Bay Area and Silicon Valley non-profit organizations and has served on numerous non-profit boards including; The Girls Afterschool Academy, Edgewood Children’s Center, Lifetime, and Catholic Charities of the East Bay. She served as a restorative justice principal investigator with the Insight Prison Project at San Quentin State Prison. She lectures internationally on issues of self-care, cultural conflict and social policy. 

Dr. Bankhead received her M.S.W. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of California at Berkeley. She was a National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), Minority Research Fellow and a fellow of the United States Psychiatric Congress. She is co-author, with University of California Berkeley, Professor Emeritus Jewelle Taylor-Gibbs, of Preserving Privilege: California Politics, Propositions and People of Color. She is co-author with John Erlich of, “Diverse Populations and Community Practice“, found in the Handbook of Community Practice, 1st Edition. She has served on the Diversity Committee of the Family Council at Spirit Rock Meditation Center.

Her future is focused on expanding the work of RJ towards radical inclusivity and practicing restorative justice through an equity lens in ways that honor its indigenous roots.