Welcome New Peace Center Staff!

Meet the Peace Center’s newest staff members, Jelani Drew and Jo Blanton!

Jelani will be RPEC’s new Advocacy Coordinator, leading outreach, coordinating programs to unite communities, educating for social change, and connecting like-minded people to the Peace Center and to one another. In addition, Jelani will lend crucial support to our new Gilpin Court Youth Peace Team Initiative.

Recipient of the VCU School of Social Work “Black History in the Making 2017” award, Jelani brings organizing, facilitation, and graphic design skills, and extensive community experience. Jelani served as MSW intern with the Peace Center during the 2016-17 school year.  

Jo Blanton has just joined the Peace Center as the new Communications and Development Coordinator, succeeding Beth Sparks.

Jo will strengthen RPEC communications and fundraising efforts and provide administrative support for programs and events. Before taking on the Peace Center position, Jo was the adoption coordinator for the Richmond Animal League. Previously, Jo worked as an organizer with both Equality Virginia and Planned Parenthood. Jo’s advocacy work began while he was student activist at VCU, where he received his degree in Sociology.

Jo grew up in rural central VA, Bumpass Virginia. He is a part of a large family, the second of 6 kids.

You can contact Jelani at jelani@rpec.org and Jo at joseph@rpec.org.

Please welcome Jelani and Jo to the Peace Center staff!