Delana Tavakol joined the ACLU of Mississippi in May 2020 as a Legal Intern before being hired as our Smart Justice Advocate. In this role, she works with communities to identify the drivers of mass incarceration in Mississippi and improve government policies at the local level. Prior to joining ACLU-MS, Delana worked with grassroots organizations in North America and Europe to help refugees resettle in the wake of the global 2015 refugee crisis. More recently, she has done research with the Canadian Civil Liberties Union to advocate against unfettered government surveillance, and with the Orleans Public Defenders to push for legislative reform of Louisiana’s bail system.
Delana obtained her B.A. from the University of Chicago in 2017 and graduated in December 2020 with her J.D. and B.C.L. from McGill University Faculty of Law in Montreal, where she was a regular volunteer with legal clinics and community centers around the city. In her spare time, she enjoys playing the banjo and spending time with her pets.