Event White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention February 9, 2024

Vice President Kamala Harris Recognizes the CVILA at White House Ceremony

On February 9, Vice President Kamala Harris recognized the work of the University of Chicago Crime Lab’s Community Violence Intervention Leadership Academy at an event that acknowledged the accomplishments of its inaugural cohort at the White House.

Watch a recording of the Community Violence Awareness Week’s Culminating Ceremony at the White House.

Read the press release

Guest speakers at the graduation ceremony included:

  • Vice President Kamala Harris
  • Maryland Governor Wes Moore
  • Assistant Attorney General Amy L. Solomon, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice
  • Deputy Director Rob Wilcox, White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention

The ceremony also included remarks from the following individuals who are a part of the CVILA:

Maryland Governor Wes Moore. Photo by Tarik Dennie.

Crime Lab Founding Executive Director Roseanna Ander. Photo by Tarik Dennie.

CVILA Executive Director Dr. Chico Tillmon gives remarks at podium.

CVILA Executive Director Dr. Chico Tillmon. Photo by Tarik Dennie.

Assistant Attorney General Amy Solomon gives remarks at podium.

Assistant Attorney General Amy Solomon, Office of Justice Programs, Department of Justice. Photo by Tarik Dennie.

CVILA graduate Myesha Watkins. Photo by Tarik Dennie.

CVILA graduate Jason Little. Photo by Tarik Dennie.

About the Community Violence Intervention Leadership Academy

The Community Violence Intervention Leadership Academy (CVILA) is a first-of-its-kind management and leadership training designed for aspiring CVI leaders working in communities of color disproportionately impacted by gun violence. It was established to develop the CVI sector by providing leaders with the skills necessary to tackle leadership obstacles throughout their careers and to increase the impact of their organizations and the field overall. These graduates represent 21 cities across the U.S.

About the White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention

President Biden established the first-ever White House Office of Gun Violence Prevention in 2023. He charged the office with the responsibility of expediting the implementation of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act and other executive actions, identifying new executive actions to reduce gun violence, expanding the coalition of partners to pass more legislation at the state and local level, and improving support for those impacted by gun violence. The office has launched the Safer States Initiative, a toolbox for state legislators to advance gun violence prevention policy. OGVP has worked with the Department of Justice to announce model legislation for Safe Firearm Storage and Lost & Stolen Gun laws, as well as announce over 7,000 grant awards totaling over $4 billion for community safety efforts. The office coordinated the largest federal response to a mass shooting in history with 12 agencies and 100+ staff deployed to Lewiston, Maine. OGVP is already making historic progress in gun violence prevention and is excited to continue this work.