Elizabeth Rainwater

  • Hosted by Georgia Justice Project
  • Sponsored by The Clorox Company
  • Service location Atlanta, Georgia
  • Law school Samford University, Cumberland School of Law
  • Issue area Criminal Justice Reform
  • Fellowship class year 2020
  • Program Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

Elizabeth addresses the systemic issues and discriminatory impact of Georgia’s probation system through data collection, direct representation, and policy reform. 

Georgia has the highest rate of individuals on probation in the nation. Compared to other states, Georgia’s probation system delivers lengthier probation sentences and has astoundingly higher probation revocation rates. Black people, who make up roughly 30% of Georgia’s population but nearly 60% of Georgia’s correctional supervision population, are most devastated by this system. The excessive placement of Georgians on probation for increasingly lengthy terms and requiring them to comply with restrictive and nearly impossible standards with little to no assistance has essentially resulted in a probationtoincarceration pipeline in Georgia. Georgians need a comprehensive response to this issue that will cause the system to operate as it should: successfully reintegrating individuals back into society instead of back into its incarceration system. 

Elizabeth’s faith is the driving force behind her passion to advocate for the overlooked and the oppressed. She knows personally what it means to have a great advocate and desires that every person in the criminal justice system knows what it means to have someone fight for them. 

Fellowship Plans

During her Fellowship, Elizabeth will collect and correct data concerning Georgia’s probation system. This information, along with her direct representation of individuals facing probation disputes, will inform the development of educational resources to assist Georgians on probation as well as legal practitioners. Policy advocacy and legal reform will develop out of the data and educational outreach as Elizabeth assesses what legal action is necessary to confront the issues in Georgia’s probation system. 

Meet Other Fellows Like Elizabeth

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Faith Barksdale

Host: The Innocence Project

Sponsor: Ropes & Gray LLP

Current Fellow

Katherine Elise Walker

Host: National Center for Youth Law

Sponsor: Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP

John Ross McCullough

Host: Council on Crime and Justice

Sponsor: Robins Kaplan LLP

Andrea Woods

Host: American Civil Liberties Union Criminal Law Reform Project

Sponsor: Intellectual Ventures, The Ottinger Foundation