Over the course of her long career, John Jay College President Karol V. Mason has been a legal pioneer and an exceptional voice for equality, fairness, and criminal justice reform. She was a leader in the Obama Administration on juvenile justice issues, bail reform and re-entry for individuals leaving prison, and in her distinguished career at Alston & Bird LLP, she was the first African American woman elected as chair of the management committee at any major national firm.
As United States Assistant Attorney General and head of the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs, Mason oversaw an annual budget of $4 billion to support an array of state and local criminal justice agencies, juvenile justice programs, and services for crime victims, and oversaw the National Institute of Justice and the Bureau of Justice Statistics.
She was also a member of the Board of Trustees of the University of North Carolina from 2001 to 2009 and Vice Chair of that Board from 2007 to 2009. Mason received an A.B. in Mathematics from the University of North Carolina, and a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School.