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Dr. Liza Chowdhary bio

Dr. Chowdhury is a scholar activist and yogi with several years of experience working in the field of community corrections and teaching in higher education.  During her career as a Probation Officer, her passion was working with justice involved youth and partnering with local schools to create positive outcomes for the young people she supervised.  After her departure from the New Jersey Judiciary, she continued her passion of working with youth into her career as a academic by continuing to advocate for innovative, evidence based, trauma informed community based solutions and safe spaces for youth.  She also is a certified Yoga Instructor and utilizes wellness practices in her work with the community and her students.  As an expert in this field, she regularly volunteers with youth focused community organizations, consults with organizations that work with families, advocates for social justice and partners with credible messengers to develop innovative interventions for youth that are justice involved.  Her main goal in life is to continue utilizing community partnerships, academic research, activism, healing practices and education to fight against inequality and injustice. 

Presently, she teaches at Borough of Manhattan Community College (CUNY) within the Social Science, Human Services and Criminal Justice Department.  Prior to her current appointment, she taught at Fairleigh Dickinson University and Rutgers University. She has experience in teaching both graduate and undergraduate courses that include Research Methods, Corrections, Gender Crime and Justice, Gangs and Street Crimes, Introduction to Criminal Justice, Contemporary Issues, Community Resource Management, Advanced Corrections, Race and Crime and Juveniles and Violence.  She loves her students and believes that their achievements are her greatest rewards in life.  One of her most meaningful experiences in teaching has been teaching students for the NJ STEP program inside correctional facilities.  Presently, she advocates for continued opportunities for students inside correctional facilities around the country. 

Dr. Chowdhury’s research interests are intersectionality, juvenile justice, gender and crime, mass incarceration, restorative justice, collective efficacy, prison infractions and punishment, racial disparity and the criminal justice system, and trauma focused violence interventions.  In 2017, she co-founded a nonprofit entitled Reimagining Justice.  Her partners and her provide training, motivational speaking, transformative mentoring, narrative therapy, consultation, resilience circles and support for organizations and community members that are looking to develop innovative solutions for youth in schools and the community.  Reimagining Justice has partnered with organizations in Belize, Illinois, Virginia, NJ and NY in the first year of its incorporation.  The goal of this organization is to reimagine a justice system that provides love, empathy, equality and opportunities for our communities.  


  • Williams, J.M., Chowdhury, L., Daftary-Kapur, T., Garcia, E., &Vodde, R.(eds) Contemporary Ethical Issues in the Criminal Justice System: A Textbook Reader.  (2018).
  • Chowdhury, L. The Intersections of Race and Gender and Its Affects on Prison Adjustment. Journal of Criminal Justice and Law Review. (2016).
  • Chowdhury, L. (2011). Chapter 15: Forcible Rape in Caplan, J. M., & Kennedy, L. W. (2011). Risk terrain modeling compendium. Rutgers Center on Public Security, Newark.


  • Chowdhury, L., Davis, J., Hammond, D. (Book Chapter) Agents of Change in Healing Our Communities.  Prisoner Reentry in the 21st Century. 
  • Chowdhury, L., Garcia, E. The Role of Youth Workers in Alternative to Incarceration Programs. (2015-2016 Fairleigh Dickinson University College Research Grant). (Manuscript being readied for submission)
  • Chowdhury, L. (Book Chapter). Black Men and Punishment. Black Males and the Criminal Justice System. 
  • Chowdhury, L., Davis, J. When Your Protectors Become Your Oppressors: Youth Resiliency and Violence. (Manuscript being readied for submission)


  • Chowdhury, L. March 2018. Panel on Reimagining Justice. Beyond the Bars Conference at Columbia University, NY, NY. 
  • Chowdhury, L. January 2018. Keynote speaker for I.E.B.C. Mentoring group at Northern State Prison in Newark, NJ. 
  • Chowdhury, L. December 2017. Keynote speaker at Prevention Link’s Parent Engagement Conference in Union County, NJ.
  • Chowdhury, L. February 2017. Roundtable. Affirming Humanity: Beyond the Confines of the Classroom. Eastern Sociological Society, Philadelphia, PA. 
  • Chowdhury, L. December 2016. Keynote speaker at Prevention Link’s Parent Engagement Conference in Union County, NJ.
  • Chowdhury, L. November 2016. Keynote speaker at Youth Forums in Belize hosted by Belize’s Department of Youth Services. 
  • Chowdhury, L. March 2016. Paper presented entitled, “The Role of Youth Workers in Evening Reporting Centers.” Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences Conference, Denver, CO.
  • Chowdhury, L. November 2015. Roundtable: The Use of Experiential Learning for Criminal Justice. American Society of Criminology Conference, Washington, D.C.
  • Chowdhury, L. November 2015.Roundtable: Critical Ethical Issues in Criminal Justice. American Society of Criminology Conference, Washington, D.C.
  • Chowdhury, L. March 2015. Paper presented entitled, “Intersections of Race and Gender on Prison Punishment.” Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences Conference, Orlando, FL.
  • Chowdhury, L. March 2015. Roundtable: When Pedagogy and Civil Unrest Meet. Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences Conference, Orlando, FL.
  • Chowdhury, L. March 2015. Paper presented entitled, “The Effect of Race on Prison Punishment.”  Health Equity and Social Justice Conference at Teachers College, Columbia University. New York, NY.
  • Chowdhury, L. November 2009. Paper presented entitled, “Young Girls in the System, An In-Dept Look.” American Society of Criminology Conference, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
  • Chowdhury, L. November 2007. Paper presented entitled, “Empowering Female Offenders in the Community.” American Society of Criminology Conference, Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Chowdhury, L. November 2006. Paper presented entitled, “Gangs and the Community.” American Society of Criminology Conference, Los Angeles California.


Passaic Vicinage Judiciary Minority Concerns Committee

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