is an author, attorney, and nationally recognized advocate for survivors of domestic abuse and the wrongfully imprisoned. His seven-year legal odyssey to free an incarcerated survivor of domestic violence from prison was featured in the award-winning documentary film Crime After Crime, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and on the Oprah Winfrey Network. The film won more than 25 awards, including the National Board of Review Freedom of Expression Award and the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award.
Joshua Safran is the cofounder and general counsel of Medical Justice Alliance, a nonprofit that mobilizes volunteer physicians and other clinicians to protect the right to medical care for those who are incarcerated. He regularly speaks at domestic violence and legal organizations around the country and has also presented at grand rounds regarding childhood resiliency.
Safran’s critically-acclaimed memoir, Free Spirit: Growing Up On the Road and Off the Grid (Hachette), about his childhood on the dark side of the Age of Aquarius, has been called a “beautiful, powerful memoir… reminiscent of David Sedaris’s and Augusten Burroughs’s best work: introspective, hilarious, and heartbreaking” (Publishers Weekly starred review) and “a remarkable account of survival despite the odds” (Kirkus Reviews). Joshua Safran was born into a coven of lesbian witches in a Haight-Ashbury commune. He spent his 1980’s childhood hitchhiking through the American West and surviving the elements and a violent alcoholic stepfather who had been a Marxist guerrilla commander. Against all odds, Safran found his way to law school at UC Berkeley.
Safran’s essays have appeared in Salon, The Daily Beast, The Huffington Post, and USA Today and his compelling story has been heard around the world on the BBC, PBS, CBS, NPR, PRX and Authors@Google.