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Susan Howley

2019 Crime Victims’ Rights Award | National Crime Victims’ Service Awards
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Susan Howley | Crime Victims’ Rights Award
Justice Research and Statistics Association
Washington, DC

For more than 27 years, Susan Howley has championed the rights of crime victims at the national, state, local, and tribal levels. She helped guide public policies and legislative actions from the National Center for Victims of Crime for 26 years, and now advocates for integrated victim research and practice to strengthen victims’ rights nationwide as director of the Center for Victim Research (CVR). 

Ms. Howley’s passionate work as a visionary legal and public policy advocate has advanced the victim services field in exceptional ways. She has been recognized as a national authority on victims’ rights legislation, providing training and technical assistance to federal and state lawmakers and advocates, promoting compliance with victims’ rights laws, and supporting funding for victim services. 

In 2016, Ms. Howley co-developed the National Victim Assistance Academy resource center, which has expanded trainings for State Victim Assistance Academy leaders, and from 2003 to 2012, she spearheaded development of the VictimLaw.org, a publicly available online database of crime victims’ rights laws. She also created a toolkit on Victim Restitution Collection after having analyzed successful efforts around the country, and she evaluated victims’ rights developments in eight states as part of the National Institute of Justice and OVC’s Impact Evaluation of the National Crime Victim Law Institute State and Federal Clinics. 

Throughout her career, Ms. Howley has consistently demonstrated strong leadership and commitment to collaboration, achieving progress for victims’ rights by connecting federal funders, practitioners, administrators, and fellow leaders of national victimization centers. As director currently of CVR, she has led efforts to develop the nation’s first victim research library, and spearheaded formation of a Victim Research-to-Practice Cadre, connecting eight nationally recognized victim resource centers to improve the utility of research to the field. 

In addition, Ms. Howley served as chair, commissioner, or active member of numerous committees focused on victims’ rights, including the National Task Force to End Sexual and Domestic Violence Against Women, the National Commission on Forensic Science, and the Victims Advisory Group to the U.S. Sentencing Commission. In 2011, she received the esteemed Lois Haight Award for Excellence and Innovation from the Congressional Victims’ Rights Caucus.

2019 National Crime Victims' Service Awards Tribute Video

Watch this video to learn more about Susan Howley, 2019 recipient of the Crime Victims’ Rights Award.