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Grand Marshall: Morris Copeland


Morris Copeland was appointed Director of the Miami-Dade County Juvenile Services Department (JSD), formerly known as the Juvenile Assessment Center (JAC), in January 2011.


In that capacity, he provides leadership to a department whose mission it is to serve arrested juveniles, those at-risk of being arrested, and their families. Since opening in 1997, the JAC facility has processed over 190,000 juveniles in Miami-Dade County, and the JSD has been repeatedly recognized for its “front end” approach to juvenile justice. Mr. Copeland brings over 26 years of experience to his current position, including serving as the Deputy Director of JSD since 2007. A former Juvenile Justice Administrator with the State of Florida Department of Juvenile Justice, he is an esteemed expert who has helped enhance JSD’s standing as a nationally and internationally recognized model of juvenile justice reform.


The JSD model was highlighted in May 2008 at a summit hosted by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) and the U.S. Department of Justice: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP).


Mr. Copeland’s work within the juvenile justice continuum has afforded him the privilege of participating on numerous boards and committees throughout Miami-Dade County, and on a state and national/international level. Mr. Copeland is an active Advisor to The National Advisory Committee of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. He serves as an Instructor for the Georgetown University Center for Juvenile Justice Reform. Mr. Copeland currently serves as a Board Member for the Miami Children’s Initiative, the Urban League of Greater Miami, the Miami-Dade County Youth Crime Task Force, the State of Florida Department of Juvenile Justice 11th Judicial Circuit Advisory Board, and the Dade-Miami Criminal Justice Council.


In 2003, Mr. Copeland received the Designation of Certified Public Manager, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida. In 2007, Mr. Copeland successfully completed the Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government Driving Government Performance Certification Program.


Mr. Copeland is a native of Miami-Dade County, a graduate of the University of Colorado and a proud member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.



"If you can't fly then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk then crawl,

but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward."

                                                                                 - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.