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Alissa Ackerman, Ph.D.

Alissa R. Ackerman, Ph.D. (she/her/hers, why pronouns matter) is an Associate Professor in the Division of Politics, Administration and Justice at California State University, Fullerton and is co-founder of Ampersands Restorative Justice (view here), an organization dedicated to bringing restorative justice for sexual harms to scale.

She has spent her career studying sex crimes policy and practice, the etiology of sexual offending, the effects of sexual victimization, and, more recently, restorative  justice options for those impacted by sexual harm.  She is a “survivor scholar”, in that she integrates her personal experience with sexual violence with her professional expertise as a sex crimes researcher.

She facilitates restorative justice cases and trains future restorative justice practitioners.  She has worked with over 500 men and women who have perpetrated acts of sexual harm using vicarious restorative justice.

She has written extensively on topics related to sexual violence in blogs and magazine articles and has published over 35 peer-reviewed journal articles. She has authored or edited six books and recently served as co-editor on a special edition of the Journal of Sexual Abuse.  Her most recent book, Healing from Sexual Violence: The Case for Vicarious Restorative Justice, co-authored with Dr. Jill Levenson, was published in 2019.

Alissa has worked across North America, Australia, and New Zealand.  She has given over fifty national and international talks on her sex crimes work including a TED Talk on The Importance of Connection (view here).

She co-hosts the popular podcast, Beyond Fear: The Sex Crimes Podcast (view here).