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Department of Violence Prevention

The Department of Violence Prevention applies a public health approach to violence prevention focused on community-led intervention strategies to realize sustained safety and stability of the families and communities most impacted by violence.

About the Department of Violence Prevention

The Department of Violence Prevention (DVP) was established in 2017 to tackle the challenges with violence in Oakland. Where previous city programs focused primarily on those at the center of violence, the DVP has an expanded prevention and intervention mission of advocating for and supporting families impacted by unsolved cold cases and addressing broader community trauma. The ultimate goal is a safer and thriving Oakland for all.

DVP Direct Services

Services Funded by the DVP

DVP Grantee Corner



Dr. Holly Joshi

Chief of Violence Prevention

Dr. Joshi has vast leadership experience and a track record of successfully implementing evidence-based, violence prevention and intervention strategies. Prior to taking on leadership of the Department of Violence Prevention (DVP), Dr. Joshi served as Senior Director at GLIDE, a nationally recognized center for social justice, dedicated to fighting systemic injustices, creating pathways out of poverty and crisis, and transforming lives. At GLIDE she led the Center for Social Justice, a department focused on improving housing access, community health and safety, and gender and racial equity.

Dr. Joshi also previously served as Director at Bright Research Group (BRG), leading a team of community-centered research and leadership consultants, working on organizational change and capacity building projects for government, non-profit, and philanthropic organizations throughout the Bay Area. For 3 years, she led criminal legal system reform work and partnerships with local government agencies working to increase their impact in youth development, violence prevention and intervention, and community-driven alternatives to policing. In this role, she served as the lead consultant to the DVP. Through this collaboration, she supported the DVP to implement a gender-based violence strategy, expand a coaching certification program for frontline staff, develop a family systems approach, and build the capacity of network providers – initiatives that remain top priorities for the department today. Dr. Joshi has also served as the Chief Executive of MISSSEY, an Oakland-based community organization providing trauma informed, healing centered, direct services to survivors of gender-based violence.

Taking on the leadership of the DVP is a homecoming for Dr. Joshi who worked for the City from 2001-2015, holding diverse investigative and leadership roles within the Oakland Police Department including Child Exploitation Unit Supervisor, Internal Affairs Division Investigator, Crime Reduction Team Investigator, Public Information Officer, and Chief of Staff. In this work she was widely recognized for her expertise in gender-based violence, commitment to progressive policing, and collaborative relationships across the City.

Dr. Joshi received her bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Cal State East Bay, and her master’s and doctorate in leadership from St. Mary’s College.

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Department of Violence Prevention

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