Brittany K. Barnett
Buried Alive Project
Brittany K. Barnett is an attorney and lifelong social justice advocate. As the daughter of a formerly incarcerated mother, Brittany knows first-hand the impact of mass incarceration is far reaching, devastating families and entire communities.
She is co-founder of the Buried Alive Project, an organization that works to end unfair and inhumane life without parole sentencing handed down under federal drug laws through transformative litigation, legislation, and humanization. While working several years as a corporate attorney, Brittany was committed to pro bono representation of clients in federal prison. Her dedication to this life changing work paid off tremendously – resulting in executive clemency from President Obama for seven of her clients, as well as freedom for several additional clients through the federal court system. She was a leading member of the legal team that represented Alice Johnson, who was recently granted clemency from President Trump after serving 21 years of a life without parole sentence for federal drug offense.
Inspired by her own difficult experience as the daughter of an incarcerated mother, Brittany is also founder of Girls Embracing Mothers (GEM) – a nonprofit empowering woman in prison and their daughters to break the cycle of incarceration and lead successful lives with vision and purpose. Since 2013, GEM has partnered with the Texas prison system and works to lessen the impact of maternal separation by strengthening the mother-daughter relationship and equipping girls with the tools to make positive life choices.
Brittany recently left corporate law to devote herself fully to criminal justice reform. She has been named one of America’s most Outstanding Young Lawyers by the American Bar Association for her professionalism, commitment to serving the community and dedication to helping others through her pro bono work. Brittany is a graduate of SMU’s Dedman School of Law. She previously served as the Associate General Counsel at ORIX USA Corporation focusing on mergers & acquisitions and general corporate matters. Prior to her legal career, Brittany earned her license as a Certified Public Accountant and worked for international accounting firm, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. She holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Accounting.