• BLOG
5d6866da677c2a2ecdf006c2 logo p 500


RJ Center Staff, April 3 2018

Humans of RJ: Juliette Tafoya

Juliette is a freshman at UC Berkeley and is the Team Manager and an RJ Student Leader. As the manager for the center, she plans out events and RJ circles -- making sure that the RJ Center has an abundant amount of food, resources, and areas/rooms for upcoming group circles; she helps create restorative templates with the RJ leaders as well.

Juliette grew up in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles in Reseda, California. Juliette says growing up here really shaped her ability to meet all kinds of people, since Reseda is home to people of different backgrounds and cultures.

In Juliette’s own words, this is why she decided to work at the Restorative Justice Center, “I’ve been working with the government indirectly and directly all my life but didn’t know I had a passion for it. I didn’t really know what to do at Berkeley when I got here. It was the first time really being on my own, so I did research and found the Restorative Justice Center. I realized I was doing Restorative Justice on my own but I didn't recognize it at the time. I really wanted to be a leader and get involved immediately, so I could help my community, which is what I am doing through the website, and as an RJ leader.”

Juliette says, “RJ is important because we have to communicate with so many people, and we really don’t know where people are coming from. That’s why I think RJ is great because it’s open communication where people get to express how they feel and be listened to at the same time.”

Juliette highlights that RJ has allowed her to become a better leader, especially through circles. Juliette recalls an icebreaker where she caught the ball. The icebreaker that the circle conducted instructed the group to throw one ball around, at first, and to remember the order of people the ball was thrown to. Then three balls were added into the circle and keeping track of who to throw the ball to became harder and the speed of the game became faster. When Juliette caught the ball, it was actually not intended for her but for the other leader in the circle. The person throwing it to her had bad aim and was heading straight for Juliette’s face, so Juliette caught it immediately but fell down in the process. That’s when people snapped out of their tension and nervousness of being in a circle and either asked if Juliette was ok or laughed. That's what taught Juliette to take one for the team because she didn’t care if she was embarrassed from the fall. She was just happy that she learned something from that experience and was able to get the circle back into RJ.

In her free time, Juliette likes to go out with friends, eat and sit inside working on her Computer Science projects.

In 2018, Juliette is hopeful, persistent, and strives to to bring in more cohesiveness to our campus.

Written by

RJ Center Staff

Previous ASUC Elections Spotlight: Amir Wright
Next UC Berkeley Leader Spotlight: Michelle Cera