Chico Tillmon

Director of Community Violence Intervention Leadership Academy



Community Violence Intervention

Chico Tillmon, PhD, is the Director of the Community Violence Intervention (CVI) Leadership Academy. The CVI Leadership Academy will be the first CVI training program designed to elevate the leadership capacity of leaders who oversee community-based organizations, offices of violence prevention,  hospital violence intervention, and other components of the CVI ecosystem working tirelessly to quell violence in vulnerable communities. Chico joined the Crime Lab after working at Heartland Alliance as the Executive Director of READI National Center for Safer Communities, a national technical assistance provider that provides capacity building and training for cities and communities throughout the United States. The READI model utilizes employment combined with cognitive behavioral therapy, skill-building, and other support to those at the highest risk of becoming involved in gun violence. Tillmon is also a violence-prevention expert who serves on the leadership team of the Black and Brown Peace Consortium, the collaborative that led the Fund Peace initiative. The former executive director of the YMCA of Metro Chicago’s Youth Safety and Violence Prevention programs, he is a leading national consultant and training and technical assistance provider on violence prevention, reentry, and non-profits.

System impacted, Dr. Tillmon came home with the purpose of trying to change his community in a positive way. He works with youth, young adults, and direct service providers in marginalized areas to help them hone their professional skills and improve their work performance, and has worked over a decade in violence prevention, mental health, and re-entry. He was recognized as the 20222 Alumnus of the year by the University of Illinois at Chicago Criminology, Law, and Justice department. In 2021, Dr. Tillmon was recognized by President Biden for his national violence prevention work and invited to the White House. Also, he is also the recipient of the 2018 Congressional Veterans Braintrust Award and the 2017 Ford Men of Courage Award for his work in Chicago’s most vulnerable communities. He was named the Practitioner of the Year in 2016 by the University of Illinois at Chicago Criminology, Law, and Justice Department.


Chico’s Projects
Community Safety Leadership Academies

Community Safety Leadership Academies

The Community Safety Leadership Academies, composed of the Policing Leadership Academy and Community Violence Intervention Leadership Academy, aim to rigorously train the next generation of policing and community violence intervention leaders.

Latest Updates

Strides for Peace to debut Gun Violence Prevention Expo
Media Mention
Chicago Star Media
Nov 2023

Strides for Peace to debut Gun Violence Prevention Expo

Strides for Peace hosted a new expo focusing on gun violence prevention in Chicago, featuring an information session from the Crime Lab’s Chico Tillmon.