Movers & Thinkers #20: The Scales Of Juvenile Justice | Nashville Public Radio

Movers & Thinkers #20: The Scales Of Juvenile Justice

May 13, 2019

Judge Sheila Calloway sees children during some of the worst moments of their lives: right after they've been accused of committing a crime.

But she holds fast to the philosophy that children are redeemable and should be given the opportunity to change. "We as a nation have to make a change from what we think about as justice," she says. "We use incarceration as the answer for almost everything, and it cannot be the answer."

In this episode, she talks to WPLN's Emily Siner about the relationship between empathy and justice.

Support our podcasts by donating at and noting that you listen to Movers & Thinkers. Hear previous episodes of Movers & Thinkers on our websiteApple Podcasts or Google Play Music. Read the transcript of this episode here.

Sheila Calloway, Davidson County’s juvenile court judge, uses her unique combination of humor, passion, and judicial wisdom to change the conversation about justice. A native of Louisville, she came to Nashville in 1987 to attend Vanderbilt University. After graduating from law school, she worked at the Metropolitan Public Defender’s Office until 2004, when she was appointed to the position of juvenile court magistrate. She was elected as juvenile court judge in 2014 and is currently serving an eight-year term. Judge Calloway also serves as an Adjunct Professor at Vanderbilt University and Belmont College of Law.