FacultyFaculty/Author Profile

gabriel sayegh

Katal Center for Health, Equity, and Justice
Co-Founder & Co-Director
New York, NY, USA


gabriel sayegh is co-founder and co-director of the Katal Center for Health, Equity, and Justice.  Prior to launching Katal, from 2003 – 2015, sayegh worked at the Drug Policy Alliance, serving in many capacities, including as Managing Director of Policy and Campaigns.  In New York, he led the coalition effort to roll back the Rockefeller Drug Laws, designed the campaigns to reform New York’s marijuana arrests laws and pass medical marijuana legislation, and advanced efforts to reduce overdose fatalities through health-based approaches to drug policy. sayegh has appeared in a wide range of broadcast, online, and print media, including The New York Times, NY1, MSNBC,  NBC, Fox News, NPR, NY Daily News, and Associated Press. He is the author of numerous articles and coauthor of several reports, including Blueprint for a Public Health and Safety Approach to Drug Policy (coauthored with the New York Academy of Medicine) and From Handcuffs to Healthcare: Putting the Affordable Care Act to Work for Criminal Justice and Drug Law Reform.  In addition to serving as lecturer in the graduate program of the Columbia School of Social Work, sayegh has been a guest speaker at hundreds of conferences, meetings and events across the country, and gave a TEDx talk  about the war on drugs, mass incarceration, and systemic racism.

From 2012 – 2014, sayegh led a unique collaboration between DPA and Charlotte Street Films to utilize the powerful, Sundance award-winning documentary about the war on drugs directed by Eugene Jarecki: THE HOUSE I LIVE IN. In addition to advising the film director and producers on policy and advocacy, sayegh and his team devised strategies to utilize the film as an advocacy tool to leverage local reform efforts and spur public debate about mass incarceration and the war on drugs. The collaboration included working with hundreds of community based organizations in using the film as a tool for education and advocacy – in schools, community centers, legislatures, prisons and jails, and more.

sayegh serves as a Trustee of the New York Foundation, and sits on the board of Atlanta-based community group, Project South: Institute for the Elimination of Poverty and Genocide. He holds a Master’s in Public Health from the CUNY School of Public Health at Hunter College.

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