Sarah Schirmer is a director in PFM’s Management and Budget Consulting practice and a deputy director of PFM’s Center for Justice & Safety Finance. Sarah supports local government clients with criminal justice and public safety priorities and performance and operational assessments. Sarah brings to the Center more than ten years of experience working in the criminal justice field, with a focus on policy, data analysis and research.
Prior to joining PFM, Sarah was the criminal justice policy advisor to Mayor Mitch Landrieu in New Orleans, where she was responsible for strategic planning, policy research, and cross- agency coordination of the Mayor’s priorities for the criminal and juvenile justice systems. In this role, she led the city’s participation in the MacArthur Foundation’s Safety and Justice Challenge, a national initiative to reduce overuse of jail. In this role, Sarah led the city’s initial application and implementation of a $1.65 million award that contributed to a 21% reduction in New Orleans’ jail population within two years that has been sustained.
Sarah was one of the inaugural members of the New Orleans Innovation Delivery Team where she was responsible for all performance management and measurement of the city’s initiatives pertaining to its murder reduction, customer service and economic opportunity strategies.
Sarah has also evaluated problem-solving courts in Maryland, provided research assistance to The Sentencing Project and Center for Employment Opportunities, and early in her career, was an assistant budget analyst at the New York City Office of
Management and Budget.