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Shani Penn

Shani Penn



Shani Penn, a dedicated Youth Solutions Board Member, passed away unexpectedly on August 15. Joya Harris, another Youth Solutions Board Member and close friend to Shani, summarized her commitment to our organization and Michigan's youth in the following tribute:

"Shani has been at our side every step of the way, guiding, leading, pushing, directing, giving and serving.  She gave of herself fully, and I know that first hand because she was always there for us.  ALWAYS.  She cared very much about our community, its people, and Youth Solutions.


And her family...she loved them with her entire heart, and her entire being.  Her sister, her momma, her daddy and, most importantly, her nephews.  And, they loved her, as did so many people in this community." - A beautiful tribute written by Joya Harris, Youth Solutions Board Member.

Shani's unwavering commitment to our organization, her dedication to our mission, and her passion for serving the community have left a lasting impact. Her legacy will guide us as we navigate the path she helped pave.


Shani Penn had over 12 years of corporate experience, and over 8 years of community service experience in the City of Detroit. She served as a senior strategy advisor for Governor Rick Snyder for three years in the executive office.

She was the President and CEO of JPW Strategies, LLC, a consulting firm established in 2012 that offers specialized consulting in the area of municipal government, contract negotiations, strategic planning, automotive client relations management, executive training, and operations streamlining. Shani’s background includes work as advisor and chief of staff to Detroit’s Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr and several positions with Daimler Chrysler Financial Services and Chrysler Financial.

Shani graduated from Western Michigan University with a degree in marketing and holds a master’s degree in human resources from Central Michigan University. She has also completed one year of MBA studies at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business. 

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