Bio

Hi! My name is Justin Leverett. I’m a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Kansas (KU) with bachelors degrees in Journalism (News and Information concentration) and French Language. I believe that media should nurture and encourage youth from international, multicultural backgrounds and disadvantaged areas to engage with civic society. Most of all, I want to create a more peaceful, sustainable, and inclusive environment that will sustain future generations as they learn and grow. Cheers!

Exploring the endless trails.

Exploring the endless trails.

I learned so much while working for our daily student newspaper, the University Daily Kansan, in the semester leading up to my graduation! What I took away from my studies, most of all, was that writing is hard work… and I haven’t stopped since. That’s what drove me to serve as secretary and then president of a new student organization, the Kansas Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. All the while, I never stopped contributing to and producing a weekly radio news magazine, working as a volunteer rotation DJ for our student-run radio station, 90.7 KJHK, or working on finishing two majors in a total of four years.
Love this photo the Skyview, from my heyday of exploring in ATL.

Love this photo of the Skyview, from my heyday of exploring in ATL.

Then, two years after graduation, in Fall 2012, I applied and was accepted as a member of the first cohort of faith-based volunteers for Quaker Voluntary Service, which brought me to Atlanta, Georgia to workfor CDF: A Collective Action Initiative, a community engagement organization in a low-income city just outside Atlanta with a high concentration of recently-arrived refugees and immigrants to the U.S. My work there called upon me to produce content for the organization’s  newsletter, and when I became more connected with the Clarkston community, I took on greater responsibility, helping to design a new website and brand.
Isis, my old car

My car, Isis: this tough bugger got me from IL to GA

Upon the end of my year with QVS, I worked briefly as a reporter for a local monthly start-up newspaper called The Broadway, which had been founded by Bhutanese refugee youth. We delivered the Broadway to local sites (the Clarkston Public Library, the Clarkston Community Center, and Clarkston City Hall) as well as refugee-serving agencies like Refugee Family Services and the Center for Pan-Asian Community Services, which was a major supporter of the newspaper.

Clarkston was the initial site of resettlement for tens of thousands of refugees in the ’90s and ’00s, and is an area ripe with diverse languages and culture, as well as its share of poverty and struggle. I reported on subjects as diverse as local community gardens, city politics, and aspiring entrepreneurship in the multicultural communities. After a time as a youth tutor in an impoverished apartment complex there.

Today, though I’ve moved from Atlanta to the Portland, OR, area, where I remain active in Quaker Friends Meetings and activist circles, and I am seeking work as a reporter or editor for a publication focussing on local art and culture, managing communications for a non-profit working on social justice issues, or non-fiction writing and editing, particularly on the subjects of immigration, culture, and environmentalism.

I’m a lifelong learner and hopeless romantic continuously working to improve myself, live life to its fullest, and to skillfully observe and report. I’d love to hear from you!

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