Jessie Brunner

Associate Director, Strategy and Program Development
Director, Human Trafficking Research

Jessie Brunner is proud to serve as Associate Director of Strategy and Program Development at the Center for Human Rights and International Justice at Stanford University. She is also the Center’s Director of Human Trafficking Research. In these roles, Jessie contributes to overall vision and strategy, and leads several of the Center's core research collaborations related to labor exploitation. Jessie is currently working on several multidisciplinary, community-engaged research projects, including enhancing contract and payment structures to combat forced labor in tuna fisheries and – as co-Principal Investigator of the Re:Structure Lab – investigating how supply chains and business models can be re-imagined to promote equitable labor standards and worker rights. She is also Director of Strategic Partnerships for the Stanford Human Trafficking Data Lab, guiding the Lab’s strategy and establishing key relationships and connections with the global anti-trafficking community. Much of this work focuses on policy engagement in Brazil and Southeast Asia, though Jessie remains active on these issues locally in San Diego and the Bay Area, as well as globally through various United Nations bodies. Her work is motivated by the desire to understand how these forms of abuse are linked to systemic inequities, and in turn, how policies can be designed to curb them while promoting fairness and justice. Jessie is further involved in projects related to trauma-informed human rights investigation and environmental justice. She has worked on human rights and post-conflict reconciliation in Argentina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Cambodia, Chile, Colombia, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Rwanda, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand.

Previously, Jessie served as a researcher at Stanford’s Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law’s Program on Human Rights; a Public Affairs Assistant at the State Department in the Bureau on Democracy, Human Rights and Labor; a reporter for Los Angeles Times Community News; and a non-profit public relations/marketing manager. She earned a Master’s in International Policy from Stanford University and a self-designed interdisciplinary Bachelor’s degree and Spanish minor from the University of California, Berkeley.

In addition to her professional accomplishments, Jessie is a gratified mom, wife, daughter, sister, and friend who enjoys baking, cycling, and tree bathing. She rejects all forms of hatred and strives to be an ally who is willing to receive feedback and grow.


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