Profile: franklin.cruz

Franklin Cruz is Chief Operating Officer and Program Director at JMI, where he has been responsible for training and technical assistance since 2011. In 2013, Franklin assumed responsibility for coordinating the Resource Center Partnership, the latest expansion of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundationís Models for Change initiative. More recently, JMI, with Franklin as a key team member, has also been involved in the MacArthur Foundation's Safety and Justice Challenge focused on reducing the overreliance on jails and the racial and ethnic disparities in the adult criminal justice system. His other projects include business process analysis of county criminal and juvenile justice systems, promoting evidence-based interventions for drug-involved defendants and offenders, and an implementation evaluation of the expansion of the public defender office in Massachusetts. Franklin previously served as Chief Operating Officer at The Bronx Defenders, a nationally-recognized public defender office in New York City. In addition to his decade at The Bronx Defenders, Franklin has worked in the education sector, most recently as Professional Services Director at Teachscape, a professional development company for K-12 educators and instructional leaders. Franklin received his B.A. in Public Policy from Brown University and holds a Master of Public Policy from the University of California at Berkeley.




On March 18, 2017 - the 54th anniversary of the Gideon v. Wainright decision - NAPD published its Foundational Principleswhich are recommended to NAPD members and other persons and organizations interested in advancing the cause of equal justice for accused persons.  


On March 2, 2017, NAPD released its Statement on Reducing Demand For Public Defense: Alternatives to Traditional Prosecution Can Reduce Defender Workload, Save Money, and Reduce RecidivismThere are more than 2 million people in jail and prison in the United States. This is a four-fold increase since 1980. This increase and the racial disproportionality among incarcerated people has led to alliances across the political spectrum to address the impact on people and on budgets.  As the new Coalition for Public Safety has put it, “Our country has an ‘overcriminalization’ problem and an ‘overincarceration’ problem — and it’s getting worse." NAPD authored this statement because there is a great opportunity to make transformative changes that can improve justice and save money.  A variety of organizations representing a wide spectrum of political views have joined together to end the systematic problem of overcriminalization and narrow the net of incarceration by reforming criminal codes.