The  Center for Justice Research staff and research team are a collective of  diverse individuals with expertise in the areas of research, policy, and advocacy, with a common interest in producing an equitable criminal justice system.


Howard Henderson, Ph.D. | Director

Howard Henderson is the founding director of the Center for Justice Research in the Barbara Jordan – Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs at Texas Southern University.  He is a professor of justice administration and former graduate program director in the Administration of Justice Department.  Howard is an expert on culturally responsive criminal justice research, program evaluations and assessment instrument validations.  Dr. Henderson serves as an advisory board member of the Vera Institute’s Rural Jail Research Policy Network and as a member of the National Scientific Advisory Committee at the Institute of Justice Research and Development at Florida State University.   

Recently, Dr. Henderson served as the chair of the data subcommittee for Houston Racial/Ethnic Disparities Committee Data Workgroup supported by the MacArthur Foundation.  Recently, Howard completed the National Science Foundation-funded project with the Baylor College of Medicine’s Initiative on Neuroscience and Law that designed an iPAD risk assessment application that determined decision-making characteristics of the criminal justice involved through a range of cognitive traits.  Dr. Henderson has also developed a multi-university research collaborative that provides mentoring opportunities for minority graduate students and university-level faculty.  This program seeks to develop a synergistic pairing of mentee-mentor through mutual professional interest and technical expertise.

He is a former member of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice Multidisciplinary Advisory Board overseeing the U.S. Department of Justice – U.S. Department of Labor’s Prison Reentry Initiative. Dr. Henderson also was an instructor in the United States Department of State’s International Law Enforcement Academy (ILEA). In previous work, he has examined the effect of perceived procedural justice and legitimacy on inmate behavior, predictive equity among risk assessment instruments, and a host of culturally-responsive criminal justice program evaluations.

Howard’s research on predictive bias and program evaluation has been supported by the National Science Foundation, Department of Justice, and most recently the collaborative efforts of the Center for Advancing Opportunity, Thurgood Marshall College Fund and the Charles Koch Foundation. Dr. Henderson has served as an expert advisor for state and federal legislators and a host of criminal justice agencies along with reform-oriented non-profit organizations.

Dr. Henderson received his B.S. in criminal justice administration from Middle Tennessee State University, his masters of criminal justice from Tennessee State University, and his PhD in Criminal Justice from Sam Houston State University in 2006.

Curriculum Vitae


Ambery Lype | Outreach Communications Coordinator

Ambery Lype is the Outreach Communications Coordinator for the Center for Justice Research (CJR.) She oversees communications planning and evaluation, media outreach, research publication, graphic design and data visualization. She manages the website, social media platforms, constituency mailings and newsletters, and the organization’s database.

Prior to joining the Center for Justice Research, Ambery’s focus was solely connected to community engagement with the Criminal Justice System. She was in communications, probation and the court system. Ambery received her undergraduate degree from Sam Houston State University in Criminal Justice and Psychology.


Hope Richard | Administrative Assistant

Hope Richard is an Administrative Assistant at the Center for Justice Research (CJR), where she provides direct assistance to the Director, associated staff, and research fellows playing a key role in administration of several contracting and intellectual property processes, along with scheduling, communications, document production, and other related activities.