Letter From the Co-Chairs

By Laura Finley and Jennie Barron

Greetings, PJSA!

We write this just a few weeks after some of us were able to see each other in person for the first time in two years, such a treat! Although most of us are Zoom fatigued, it is great to have that as an option for those who could not travel to Milwaukee. 

The conference was, as usual, wonderful and inspiring. On behalf of the Board, we thank Lynn Woehrle, who was the Conference Chair, and her entire team at University of Milwaukee as well as the Wisconsin Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies. We also extend our gratitude to Executive Director Michael Loadenthal, who is always such an integral part of the conference and of PJSA in general. We are also very grateful for the PJSA members who brought students to the conference! Next year’s conference, hosted at the University of Mount Union, promises to be another vibrant opportunity for scholars, activists and students to meet and collaborate.

The Board had a very useful meeting. We are pleased to announce that membership has been increasing and thank Board members Dean Johnson and Jeremy Rinker for their efforts. And of course, we thank all of YOU, our members, for supporting PJSA.  We are also encouraging everyone to look into institutional memberships if your campus is not yet one. Questions about that can be directed to Jeremy Rinker.

The shift to virtual meetings and events due to the global pandemic has been trying for us all, but one positive note is that it prompted PJSA to offer some additional programming throughout the year. We collaborated to sponsor a one-day forum on the death penalty featuring Sister Helen Prejean as the keynote speaker, and we will again be partnering for dating and domestic violence awareness events in February. We will also be sponsoring several virtual panels in late March focused on the legacy of slavery, so stay tuned to the listserv and PJSA’s social media for those details. If you have ideas for other collaborations, please do not hesitate to reach out to either of us.

We are excited to launch our podcast soon and also remind members that any feedback on the journals can be directed to Publications Chair Matt Johnson at mwjohnson19@gmail.com. Further, feedback on this magazine can be directed to Laura Finley (lfinley@barry.edu) as guest editor and to Wim Laven (wimlaven@gmail.com) as editor. 

Here’s to a brighter and more peaceful 2022!

Laura Finley and Jennie Barron

Co-Chairs, PJSA Board of Directors


Laura Finley is a former high school social studies teacher and currently Professor of Sociology & Criminology at Barry University in Miami Shores, Florida. She is author, co-author or editor of more than 30 books as well as numerous journal articles and book chapters. Dr. Finley is also a contributor to PeaceVoice and is actively involved with a number of peace and justice efforts, including serving as Co-Chair of the PJSA Board of Directors.

Jennie Barron lives in Nelson, BC (Canada) and teaches peace studies and restorative justice at Selkirk College in Castlegar, BC. She is also the Chair of the Mir Centre for Peace at Selkirk College, where she organizes a speaker series, films, community conversations, trainings and myriad special events. Her academic background is varied and includes the study of social movement politics, allyship between environmentalists and Indigenous peoples, food justice and urban space. She is currently initiating a research project aimed at improving dialogue and listening across social and political divides.