Ask Shawne Montgomery what her favorite quote is, and this will be her reply: “'One for all, and all for one!' That is something my mom, brother and I said to each other. We were all we had. If one went, we all went.”
That quote reveals a lot about Shawne. The difficulties she faced growing up in a single-parent household. Her loyalty to family. A sense of indomitability. And an absolute commitment to hold nothing back. That latter trait, in particular, is often on display in meetings. Shawne (pronounced Shaw-knee) can always be counted on to speak up and give voice to what she sees to be the truth, no matter how comfortable that truth might be. In short, she is a force to be reckoned with.
As a field organizer for the ACLU of Michigan’s Smart Justice Campaign, Shawne is tasked with reaching out to area residents and building support for a project that seeks to transform the state’s criminal justice system and drastically reduce mass incarceration. It is an effort she feels “blessed and honored” to be a part of.
What more can be said about her? Prince is her all-time favorite artist, and his autobiographical movie, Purple Rain, holds a special place in her heart because there are aspects of the musician’s life she identifies with, especially his determination to overcome obstacles, and the conviction that belief in yourself is the key to success.