Taveras and Gonell Discuss Restorative Justice at GLFHC’s Speakers Series Thursday

Jadi Taveras, head of school, at Esperanza Academy of Lawrence, and Quin Gonell, manager of Restorative Justice at Lawrence High School. (Courtesy photographs.)

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“Restorative Justice” is the theme of the second session of Greater Lawrence Family Health Center’s Speakers Series, taking place tomorrow night.

Jadi Taveras, head of school, at Esperanza Academy of Lawrence, and Quin Gonell, manager of Restorative Justice at Lawrence High School, discuss, what the Health Center calls, “the importance of restorative justice in education.”

“The GLFHC Speaker Series is an opportunity for leadership in the Merrimack Valley to ‘walk-the-walk’ on diversity. We can come together from various backgrounds to discuss significant challenges to healthier lives in Lawrence and collectively create solutions,” said Dr. Guy L. Fish, CEO of Greater Lawrence Family Health Center, which also operates clinics in Haverhill and Methuen.

Open to all, the session takes place tomorrow, Thursday, Aug. 18, at 4:30 p.m., at the Performing Arts Center of Lawrence High, 70-71 North Parish Road, Lawrence.

Taveras is a first-generation Latino from Lawrence. He is a graduate of Kimball Union Academy and has a bachelor’s from Siena College in Political Science and Global Studies. He spent a semester at Stellenbosch University in South Africa working alongside the African National Congress Youth on issues of civil rights. After several years of leading international development initiatives in Latin America and East Asia, Taveras earned his master’s in Intercultural Leadership, Communication and Management from SIT Graduate Institute in Brattleboro, Vt. He was appointed in2018 as head of school at Esperanza Academy, an all-girls middle school with a 12-year commitment to its students.

Gonell grew up in Lawrence in an immigrant household as the youngest of eight siblings. He is a Salem State University Hall of Fame Teacher and was selected as a Massachusetts Colleges and Universities Teacher of the Year. His more recent work as an academic researcher was recognized by the Association of American Colleges and Universities, which named him a 2021 recipient of the K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award. He earned both his high school and college diplomas, crediting strong relationships he cultivated with teachers and peers as a major factor in his ability to successfully navigate the adversities that often hinder the ability of inner-city youth to resolve their life’s challenges. He continues to apply these values in his role as a school administrator tasked with expanding restorative practices at Lawrence High, which serves more than 3,000 youth of color.

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