Most recently, Ms. Norton served as the Division Director for Local Government Initiatives at the Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center, a national nonprofit organization that serves policymakers at the local, state, and federal levels from all branches of government.
During her tenure at the CSG Justice Center she oversaw four program areas: Law Enforcement, Mental Health, Reentry, and School Discipline. She led a team that provided technical assistance to cities, counties, and nonprofits focused on cross-system collaborations between law enforcement and other criminal justice entities, with a significant focus on the intersection between law enforcement and behavioral health systems.
Before joining the CSG Justice Center, Norton spent more than 19 years with the Boston Police Department, where her last position was as the Director of Public Affairs and Community Programs. She helped shape the agency’s reentry efforts and successfully worked with citizens and faith-based organizations to build consensus for improving public safety. She designed and managed the police department’s community affairs activities, including programs for court-involved and at-risk youth.
Norton said her experience forging relationships between law enforcement and the community laid a strong foundation for her new role at the Police Foundation.
“The Police Foundation’s top priority is to improve American policing and enhance the capacity of the criminal justice system to function effectively,” Norton said. “As an independent, nonprofit, non-partisan organization focused on evidence-based and community policing, the Foundation is in a unique position to talk to researchers, police departments and policy-makers about how policing may be made more efficient and responsive to the community.”
Norton received her B.A. from the University of Massachusetts and her M.Ed. from Boston University.
Police Foundation President Jim Bueermann said the organization will greatly benefit from Norton’s expertise from both working within a major city police department and overseeing a national effort aimed at identifying best practices and helping spread them in communities across the country.
“We are extremely fortunate to be joined by this knowledgeable and progressive executive who can lead our team in maintaining the high standards of academic excellence and practical solutions that have been the hallmark of the Police Foundation,” Bueermann said. “Blake is exactly the kind of person we need to guide the foundation in our efforts to identify cutting-edge technology and practices and to determine how best to make them work for police departments large and small.”