Senior Officer, Human Rights Research & Policy

Johanna serves as Senior Officer, Human Rights Research & Policy, working as a lead editor and researcher for the organization’s regional reports on artistic freedom. As a research professional, Ms. Bankston’s topics of strongest interest are in free speech, digital technologies, migration governance, and human rights. 

Ms. Bankston has worked as a research assistant for the Oxford Department of International Development, Terre Des Hommes in Budapest, and the UC Berkeley Human Rights Center’s Digital Investigations Lab. She also worked as an asylum paralegal for more than two years in San Francisco, specializing in LGBTQ+ and gender-based violence claims. 

Prior to joining AFI, Ms. Bankston received an MSc in Refugee and Forced Migration Studies from the University of Oxford. She also holds a BS in Environmental Studies and a BA in Latin American Studies from the University of California, Berkeley.