Alicia Virani

The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation Director, Criminal Justice Program

  • B.A. Vassar College, 2005
  • M.A. UCLA, 2011
  • J.D. UCLA School of Law, 2011

Alicia Virani is The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation Director of the Criminal Justice Program at UCLA School of Law. She directs a policy and research agenda focused on decarceration efforts, with a particular focus on issues of pretrial detention and restorative and transformative justice. Alicia is the co-founder of the bail practicum at the law school, in which students represent individuals in felony bail hearings to advocate for their release pretrial. She also teaches a course on trauma informed lawyering and restorative and transformative justice. Alicia is co-counsel in the Cullors v. County of Los Angeles lawsuit, a co-chair of the Los Angeles Alternatives to Incarceration Pretrial Subcommittee and a co-chair of the court-related procedures ad-hoc committee of the Los Angeles Jail Population Review Council.

Prior to her current role, Alicia was a Deputy Public Defender in the Orange County Public Defender’s Office where she represented indigent clients in criminal matters and parents navigating the dependency system. She also served as an Equal Justice Works Fellow and staff attorney at the California Conference for Equality and Justice where she handled juvenile justice matters and created and directed a Restorative Justice Community Conferencing program that continues to divert LA County's youth out of the juvenile justice system each year. Virani earned her B.A. from Vassar College, and a joint J.D. from UCLA School of Law and M.A. in Urban Planning from UCLA. Virani is a graduate of both the Critical Race Studies Program and the David J. Epstein Program in Public Interest Law and Policy of the Law School.


  • Articles
    • The Co-optation of Restorative Justice and its Consequence for an Abolitionist Future, 30 WM. & MARY J. RACE, GENDER & SOC. JUST. 101 (2024). Full Text