Turna R. Lewis, Esq
Attorney, Voter Empowerment and Restoration Project Director
Turna R. Lewis is a life-long advocate for racial and social justice and equity. A dedicated and committed public servant, Ms. Lewis worked for the District of Columbia government in senior attorney and senior advisor positions for approximately twenty years. During her tenure with District of Columbia government Ms. Lewis developed expertise in civil liberties – privacy-protection of personally identified information (PII) and open government; police misconduct, public policy, labor and employment law, and workplace investigations. She served as the first non-uniformed and female African American Executive Officer for the D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services where she advised the Fire Chief on labor relations strategies and matters.
Ms. Lewis is a skilled conflict resolution expert experienced in community and civic engagement that focuses on addressing systemic racial inequities through strategic advice, process design, and using dispute resolution methods of negotiation, mediation, conciliation, and facilitation to achieve equity and equitable development. As Senior Associate and Practice Lead of the History and Conciliation Practice at Justice and Sustainability Associates, Ms. Lewis was a consultant with the Episcopal Church’s “Truth-Telling, Healing and Reconciliation Initiative” to address its role in slavery, reckon with past and ongoing racial injustice, and identify visions for racial healing and repair. In that capacity she led a team responsible for strategic design of webinar content, assessment and curation of resources and training, facilitating webinars and stakeholder meetings; and counseling local, diocesan and churchwide leadership around movement-building and countering resistance. As a consultant with the Emory University Police Department Ms. Lewis developed and provided customized training on the Procedural Justice Model of Policing and Implicit Bias to the Emory Police Department’s senior officers.
Ms. Lewis’ expertise includes extensive experience as an arbitrator and mediator in a variety of complex disputes. She has adjudicated/arbitrated a broad range of claims, including serving as an ad hoc hearing examiner with the D.C. Office of Police Complaints adjudicating allegations of police misconduct. She is an ad hoc member of the American Arbitration Association Commercial, Consumer Arbitration, and Employment Panels, the U.S. Postal Service Redress Panel, the Financial Industry Regulatory (FINRA) Arbitration Panel, and a volunteer mediator with the U.S. District Court – District of Columbia Circuit Court Mediation Program.
Ms. Lewis’ community involvement includes volunteering in voter registration initiatives, canvassing, and serving as a poll watcher. She is a volunteer facilitator with the Urban Land Institute. She recently participated in the Justice Initiative – Harvard Law School’s Systemic Justice Project and Howard University School of Law’s Thurgood Marshall Civil Rights Center’s Program on addressing systemic injustice in the legal system.