Ana Bermúdez Given “Outstanding” Honor by El Diario Newspaper

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On May 17, 2009, Ana Bermúdez, Children’s Aid’s Director of Juvenile Justice Programs, was named one of New York’s Mujeres Destacadas (literally, outstanding women, here intended as distinguished Latinas) by the Spanish-language newspaper El Diario, which honored Sonia Sotomayor, President Obama’s pick for the Supreme Court, in the same group!

The newspaper recognized Ana’s vast contributions to the field of youth involved with the juvenile justice system, a vocation that began when she first became a lawyer and joined the Juvenile Rights Division of the Legal Society, then moved to the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services. She started as Director for Court Operations there and eventually became Director of Community Prep High School, a position she held from 2003 until June 2007, when she was invited by The Children’s Aid Society to fill her current position. At the agency, Ana directs the LINC (Lasting Investments in Neighborhood Connections) programs, which include community re-entry and employment programs for formerly incarcerated youth as well as City Challenge, a day placement program for formerly incarcerated youth.

Ana and her staff at Children’s Aid slowly gain the trust of youth in these programs, strengthening their self-confidence and building on their own interests and talents, helping them resume their educations, achieve a transformational relationship with an adult, develop job skills and better their social, emotional and financial literacy. “Once we gain their trust, then we can help them make the critical decisions they must make in order to thrive and not merely survive,” she says.

Please visit our Juvenile Justice page or our Publications page and scroll to the 2008 Annual Report about juvenile justice, “NOW WHAT? Youth at the Crossroads.”

You may also visit the El Diario web page with all the Mujeres Destacadas.