Adrienne Hayes has previously worked for the Center for Court Innovation at Midtown Community Court as a facilitator with youth and adults teaching Office Service Skills and job readiness skills as an alternative to incarceration. At the Department of Education she worked in a high school with the Dean's office and with school safety.
Jenny joined the Columbia School of Social Work in July 2011 after serving as the Director of Social Work with Urban Justice Center’s Mental Health Project. Since joining the School of Social Work she has dedicated her time to supporting students in field practicums, with a focus on interdisciplinary practice within social work and the law. She teaches both Contemporary Social Issues, a social policy course, and developed and teaches the first Forensic Social Work class offered at CUSSW. Additionally, Jenny teaches supervision and field instruction to MSW graduates, and has co-created a curriculum for practitioners and organizations on recognizing and managing vicarious trauma.
Before becoming the Director of Social Work with the Mental Health Project, Jenny dedicated her social work expertise to the Bronx community at The Bronx Defenders, a holistic public defender office in the South Bronx that provides criminal, family and civil defense. Starting in 2002, she helped develop the role of social work within an interdisciplinary model of advocacy and in 2005 became their first Director of Social Work. In 2009, Jenny received The New York City Chapter for National Association of Social Workers Social Work Image Award for her outstanding contributions in social work administration.
Jenny has a private mitigation practice working on both state and federal cases and lives in Harlem with her husband and two children.
Jeanette Toledo is a recent graduate of Howie the Harp Advocacy Peer Training Program working as a Peer Intern with Cases in the NewStart Program, a short-term alternative to incarceration, to help reduce individuals criminal involvement and begin to work towards recovery and wellness.
Jeanette Toledo believes in services guided by evidence-based approaches including motivational interviewing, trauma-informed care, active listening, non-judgmental, and harm reduction. As a peer specialist, Jeanette Toledo believes in the principles of “We are all Humans First”, advocacy, recovery, resilience, self-determination, public safety and has a Ph.D. in lived experiences.
Jeanette Toledo is a Certified Peer Specialist – Provisional, Certified Adult and Youth Mental Health First Aid USA, a member of NAMI with Peer-to Peer and Hope to Recovery Certificates and Certificate of Completion for opioid overdose prevention including naloxone and Narcan in order to help save lives, just to name a few.
Roland R. Acevedo is in private practice as principal attorney in the Law Office of Roland R. Acevedo, where he represents individuals, businesses and labor unions on varied issues including civil litigation, labor/contract matters, family and matrimonial law, prison/parole/supervised release, criminal defense, appeals in state and federal court, and administrative law and professional licensing/discipline. He was formerly associated with the firm Scopetta Seiff Kretz & Abercrombie, worked as interim supervising attorney for The Legal Aid Society’s Homeless Family Rights Project (where he served before law school as Senior Coordinator of Advocacy Programs), and as managing attorney for the Osborne Association. Roland was law clerk to the Honorable Deborah A. Batts, SDNY. He is a cum laude graduate of Fordham Law School, where he was a member of the Order of the Coif, Associate Editor of the Fordham Law Review and a Stein Scholar.
Assemblyman Walter T. Mosley was elected to represent the 57th Assembly District, encompassing the Brooklyn neighborhoods of Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, Prospect Heights and parts of Bedford Stuyvesant and Crown Heights, in 2012.
Over those years he has been a staunch advocate for his constituents both in Albany and in the district.
Alongside his colleagues he has worked to pass crucial legislation to protect New Yorkers from unscrupulous landlords, furthered criminal justice reform, and ensured
As an outspoken critic of many of the current rent laws that have caused the housing crisis that exists today in New York City, Assemblyman Mosley has worked to combat the effects by helping to educate constituents of their rent stabilized status as well as helping to make housing more affordable for seniors and the disabled.
For the last few years he has organized an annual Peace Concert in Brooklyn with community groups prior to the annual J’Ouvert festival to encourage non-violence at the event.
He has also continued to advocate for the legalization of adult-use cannabis in New York, especially through his work on criminal justice reform. As co-chair of the Assembly’s Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Caucus’ Marijuana Task Force he has been a leader in ensuring that minority and women owned businesses have an opportunity to be involved in the business side of the cannabis industry in New York.
Assemblyman Mosley has been a proud member of the Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic, and Asian Legislative Caucus since his election to the Assembly. He previously served as second Vice Chair and as the Budget Chair.
Assemblyman Mosley is also a proud member of the New York State Caucus of Environmental Legislators, State Legislators Against Illegal Guns (SLAIG), the American State Legislators For Gun Violence Prevention (ASLGVP), Puerto Rican/Hispanic Task Force and the bi-partisan coalition, Leaders Eradicating All Poverty (LEAP), an initiative to combat poverty, wage discrimination, and income inequality throughout New York State and the New York State Assembly’s Anti-Poverty Workgroup.
Mr. Mosley has had a long history of public service throughout his life. He served as a Legislative Analyst and Oversight Investigator for the New York City Council and went on to serve as Senior Consultant to the New York State Assembly, and Senior Advisor to the Deputy Speaker of the New York State Assembly prior to becoming a Member of the Assembly. His institutional knowledge of the Assembly has helped him better navigate the body and advocate for his community.
In 2008 he was elected as a New York State Pledged Delegate for President Barack Obama on behalf of the 10th Congressional District. Likewise, Assemblyman Mosley was elected in 2016 as a NYS Pledged Delegate for then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on behalf of the 8th Congressional District.
As a college lecturer, Mr. Mosley has shared his knowledge on the inner workings of government with students in New York, and at the same time has continued his own educational advancement. In November of 2016 Mr. Mosley was selected by the Institute for State and Local Governance at the City University of New York as a part of its inaugural class of Lindsay Fellows. Named in honor of former New York City Mayor John Lindsay, the Lindsay Fellows program offers a distinct group of city and state legislators the opportunity to engage with key figures from the private and public sectors.
In 2017, Assemblyman Mosley was selected as a Henry Toll Fellow and in 2018 he was accepted into the Harvard Kennedy School of Government’s Strategies for Building and Leading Diverse Organizations program as well as selected for the CoLab Mel King Community Fellows Program at MIT, focusing on emerging issues in cities and investigate longstanding debates about deepening democracy.
Marvin Holland is the Political and Legislative Director of the Transport Workers Union Local 100, the largest transportation union in the country, representing over 42,000 members.
A native New Yorker, Marvin served in the United States Navy for four years. In 1991 he started his career with the New York City Transit Authority in the Stations Department as a Cleaner. Always an active Local 100 member, he became a Shop Steward in 2001 and was elected to the TWU Local 100 Executive Board in 2003. He became a delegate of the NYC Central Labor Council in 2004 and was elected as Section Chair of the Stations Department in 2010. In 2008 he founded Take Back Our Union (TBOU) and successfully helped to overturn the former administration in 2010. He served as Director of Political and Community Action Development from 2010 to 2012 before taking on his current position.
In this role, Marvin is responsible for advancing legislation that will improve the safety, security, and overall quality of life of the transit workers he represents. Marvin also directs Local 100’s community coalition-building campaigns, and is the founder of the Transit Forward Coalition, the only grassroots organization of Transit Riders and Workers in New York State.
Under his direction, TWU Local 100 has become a political powerhouse in New York races, helping to elect dozens of local legislators including Assemblypersons Diana Richardson, Rodneyse Bichotte, Latrice Walker, Pam Harris and Tremaine Wright; as well as a number of city council and state senate members which includes Sen. Marisol Alcantara. In June, 2016, he played a pivotal role in helping Adriano Espaillat win his primary, becoming the first Dominican-American to be elected to U.S. Congress.
Due to his strong advocacy for human and workers’ rights, he has been asked to sit on the boards of many groups, including the Latino Leadership Institute, the Mid-Manhattan Branch of the NAACP, the Making The Grade Foundation, the African-American Day Parade Advisory Board, and PA’LANTE Harlem, a housing advocacy group.
Marvin also has a long history of community service, and has been recognized many times over for his work, most recently with the Latino Leadership Institute Labor Award (2014), the Making the Grade Community Award (2014), the Political Action award from the CUNY Murphy Center (2014) and the prestigious Labor Award presented by the NYS Black & Latino Legislative Caucus (2016)as well as the Labor industries “Good Scout” award, presented by the Boy Scouts of America (2016). He has received numerous citations and proclamations from both city and state officials.
Marvin attended Cornell University, focusing on Industrial Labor Relations. Marvin resides in Harlem, NY with his wife of 35 years, Carole, with whom he has three children - Justin, Alizabeth, and Xavier.
Sean Pica is the Executive Director of Hudson Link for Higher Education in Prison, a not-for-profit organization that provides college education, life skills and re-entry support to incarcerated and formerly incarcerated men and women to help them make a positive impact on their own lives, their families and communities.
Since taking over leadership of Hudson Link the organization has grown from 60 students attending Mercy College at Sing Sing Correctional Facility, to over 500 students attending college preparatory and college programs in 6 New York State Correctional Facilities. Partnering with Columbia University, Columbia-Greene Community, Mercy, Nyack, Sienna, St. Thomas Aquinas, SUNY Sullivan, SUNY Ulster and Vassar Colleges, Hudson Link has awarded 534 college degrees. In addition, Hudson Link is now actively involved in the very important work of providing re-entry support for its alumni to help them successfully transition back into their families and communities. Before joining Hudson Link, Sean served on its Board of Directors.
Sean’s speaks from personal experience, having been convicted of a crime at 16 years old and spending the next 16 years of his life incarcerated in 9 maximum security prisons in New York State. That experience helped to inform his career.
He serves on the New York State Council on Community Re-Entry and Reintegration, was a founding member and serves on the Board of Directors for the national Alliance for Higher Education in Prison, was a founding member of the New York State Consortium for Higher Education in Prison, and serves on the Board of Directors for the Sing Sing Prison Museum and Career Gear.
Mo Beasley is an award-winning performance artist, playwright, and published author. Accomplished in the fields of race, culture, art, masculinity, and youth development, Mo Beasley is also a counselor and consultant, working with colleges, universities, and non-profits for more than 20 years. As an actor and poet, Mo has performed consistently at some of the most prestigious stages across the country. As a producer and playwright, his plays have been produced at various cutting-edge festivals. Mo has been interviewed by Rev. Al Sharpton and Chuck D, has appeared on Fox5 News, NY1 News, The Hallmark Channel, WBLS Radio, NPR Radio, and many other outlets. The New York Daily News selected him as one of "50 Unsung New York Heroes." Born in Boston, currently based in Brooklyn, Mo holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre Arts/Acting from Howard University. When he is not performing, the proud father of three daughters serves as a Youth Development Director Brooklyn Community Services and a teaching artist at BAM [Brooklyn Academy of Music].
Soffiyah Elijah is the Executive Director of the Alliance of Families for Justice. Established in 2016 in NY, the mission of the Alliance of Families for Justice (AFJ) is to support families of incarcerated people and people with criminal records, empower them as advocates and enable them to marshal their voting power to achieve systemic change.
Prior to founding AFJ, Ms. Elijah was the Executive Director of the Correctional Association of NY where she was the first woman and the first person of color to lead the 170 year old organization. Ms. Elijah has dedicated her life to human rights and social activism, and is a frequent presenter at national and international forums on criminal justice policy and human rights issues.
An accomplished advocate, attorney, scholar, and educator, Ms. Elijah has practiced criminal and family law for more than 30 years. Prior to leading the Correctional Association, Ms. Elijah served as Deputy Director and Clinical Instructor at the Criminal Justice Institute at Harvard Law School. Before moving to Harvard, she was a member of the faculty and Director and Supervising Attorney of the Defender Clinic at the City University of New York School of Law. Ms. Elijah has also worked as a Supervising Attorney at the Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem, a Staff Attorney at the Juvenile Rights Division of the Legal Aid Society, and in private practice.
Soffiyah Elijah can be reached at email@example.com.
Chaplain/Imam Abdus-Salaam Musa, holds a Master’s Degree in Pastoral Counseling and is currently writing his dissertation for a Doctoral Degree in Pastoral Counseling by developing Islamic Compassionate Care Clinical Pastoral Educational Training that is focusing on “Wellness in the Islamic Community.”
He is the first Muslim Diplomate (supervisor) for the College of Pastoral Supervision and Psychotherapy and is also a board-certified Clinical Chaplain and board-certified Pastoral Counselor. Chaplain/Imam Musa is currently a staff chaplain at St. John’s Episcopal Hospital in Far Rockaway. Additionally, he also trains individuals to become clinical chaplains at the Park Christian Church in New York City and also trains Imams and others in the Bronx, New York, in Islamic Compassionate Care Clinical Pastoral Education.
Musa may be best known for being the co-founder and President of the South East Queens Muslim Collective, co-founder of the first Muslim Women’s Shelter in Queens. Now known as ICNA Relief Women’s shelter and former director of the United Muslim Movement Against Homelessness. He has certifications and training in Disaster Response, Domestic Violence Counseling, HIV/AIDS, Adoptive and Foster Care, Mental Health, Substance Abuse and Parenting Workshops. He has been an advocate and responder for those who were in need in communities for the past 25 years.
College & Community Fellowship’s Theater for Social Change (TSC) is a performance ensemble based in Harlem that uses theater to raise awareness about the impact of mass incarceration on women, families, and communities. TSC’s original performances are based on ensemble member’s life stories and experiences with the criminal justice system and as returning citizens, with a focus on eliminating barriers to higher education and advocating for reform. The ensemble performs regularly at venues ranging from national conferences to correctional facilities.
Gloria J. Browne-Marshall is an author, a legal correspondent, a professor of constitutional law at John Jay College (CUNY), and a civil rights/human rights attorney. She reports on national and International legal issues which includes the U.S. Supreme Court and the United Nations in her award-winning syndicated newspaper column. Gloria hosts the weekly radio program "Law of the Land with Gloria J. Browne-Marshall" on WBAI 99.5FM, wbai.org in New York City. She covered President Obama's receipt of the Noble Peace Prize in Oslo, Norway, and the 2012 Presidential election, Democratic and Republican debates and National Conventions. Gloria is an arts critic who has covered the Cannes Film Festival, Sundance Film Festival, and Broadway.
She is the author of the recent book "The Voting Rights War: The NAACP and the Ongoing Struggle for Justice." She is the author of the seminal book "Race, Law, and American Society: 1607 to present" as well as textbooks and articles on constitutional law and international human rights issues. She is the founder/director of The Law and Policy Group, Inc.. Her forthcoming book is “She Took Justice.”
Gloria J. Browne-Marshall provides legal commentary for BBC, MSNBC, CNN, CBS, ABC, NPR, C-SPAN, WVON, dozens of newspapers, and other media nationally and internationally. She is a theater producer and an award-winning playwright. Gloria is a requested speaker, nationally and internationally, on issues of law, politics and equal justice. Gloria has spoken to religious groups, legal organizations, journalists as well as government, education, social and corporate audiences. She was an invited speaker at the National Press Club, on Capitol Hill and college campuses.
Richard D. Wolff is Professor of Economics Emeritus, University of Massachusetts, Amherst where he taught economics from 1973 to 2008. He is currently a Visiting Professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs of the New School University, New York City.
Earlier he taught economics at Yale University (1967-1969) and at the City College of the City University of New York (1969-1973). In 1994, he was a Visiting Professor of Economics at the University of Paris (France), I (Sorbonne). Wolff was also regular lecturer at the Brecht Forum in New York City.
Over the last twenty five years, in collaboration with his colleague, Stephen Resnick, he has developed a new approach to political economy. While it retains and systematically elaborates the Marxist notion of class as surplus labor, it rejects the economic determinism typical of most schools of economics and usually associated with Marxism as well. This new approach appears in several books co-authored by Resnick and Wolff and numerous articles by them separately and together. Common to all of Professor Wolff’s work are two central components. The first is the introduction of class, in its elaborated surplus labor definition, as a new "entry point" of social analysis. The second is the concept of overdetermination as the logic of an analytic project that is consistently non-determinist. Professor Wolff was also among the founders in 1988 of the new academic association, Association of Economic and Social Analysis (AESA), and its quarterly journal Rethinking Marxism.
Since 2005, Professor Wolff has written many shorter analytical pieces focused chiefly although not only on the emerging and then exploding global capitalist crisis. He regularly published such shorter analytical pieces on the website of the Monthly Review magazine and occasionally in many other publications, both print and electronic. The wide circulation of the shorter pieces coupled with the deepening crisis brought many invitations to present work in public forums.
The Reverend Patricia A. Reeberg is a woman of faith, character and action. Her life’s calling is to “equip the saints.” The vocation God has assigned to her to fulfill this call is to preach the Gospel.
Rev. Reeberg is the Pastor of Rejoice Ministries ~ The Church of Healing, which was called into existence by God on November 22, 2008.
Rejoice Ministries ~ The Church of Healing is a body of called out believers who believe God is calling his children to come home and be healed of their brokenness, pain, distress, turmoil and sin. God is challenging us to proclaim the acceptable year of our Lord.
Rev. Reeberg earned her Masters of Divinity at Union Theological Seminary. She also augmented her training at Harvard Divinity School, Interdenominational School of Theology, and Columbia University Graduate School of Business for Not-for-Profit Management.
Rev. Reeberg is the recipient of numerous awards and appointments, as well as being added to the Congressional Record for her outstanding work in the City of New York. She has published numerous articles. Her latest work “Speaking in Tongues to a Valley of Dry Bones” has been included in the volume “Walk Together Children” published by Cascade Books.
Harlem Stage is a performing arts center that celebrates and perpetuates the unique and diverse artistic legacy of Harlem and the indelible impression it has made on American culture. We provide opportunity, commissioning and support for artists of color, make performances accessible to all audiences, and introduce children to the rich diversity, excitement and inspiration of the performing arts.
Since its founding in 1983, Harlem Stage has curated a broad range of artistic programming across dance, theater, music, and film, and served in excess of 1,000,000 audiences, 400,000 schoolchildren and 15,000 artists. With a long-standing tradition of supporting artists and organizations around the corner and across the globe, Harlem Stage boasts such legendary artists as Harry Belafonte, Max Roach, Sekou Sundiata, Abbey Lincoln, Sonia Sanchez, Eddie Palmieri, Maya Angelou and Tito Puente, as well as contemporary artists like Bill T. Jones, Vijay Iyer, Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah, Stew, Mike Ladd, Meshell Ndegeocello, Jason Moran, José James, Nona Hendryx and more. Our investment in this visionary talent is often awarded in the early stages of many artists’ careers and we proudly celebrate their increasing success. Five members of our artist family have joined the ranks of MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship awardees: Kyle Abraham (2013), Vijay Iyer (2013), Jason Moran (2010), Bill T. Jones (1994) and Cecil Taylor (1991).
Patricia Cruz began her term as Executive Director of Harlem Stage in 1998. Ms. Cruz is member of the Board of Directors and is responsible for overseeing Board Development, long range planning, fundraising, and program development. The highlight of her tenure has been the renovation of the Gatehouse for use as Harlem Stage’s new home. Cruz serves on the Tony Nominating Committee and The CalArts Board of Overseers. Cruz served on Board of Urban Assembly. She is also past President of The New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), an organization that supports and nurtures the work of artists and arts organizations throughout the state and ArtTable, a national organization of women in the Arts.
Alvin Martinez is an Education Assistant for The Doe Fund, where he teaches the CDL Driver's Prep & Safety Training Course, schedules and conducts Testing for Adult Basic Education (TABE) in 3 facilities, and develops Educational Occupational Training Plans in one on one sessions with Doe Fund clients, motivating them to succeed in writing the next chapter of their lives. Mr. Martinez believes that “it takes a village to raise a child and may I forever be that child." He believes in “remaining teachable, humble, filled with gratitude and consistent.” Previously, he worked as a Driver and Deliverer for Pain D'Avignon, and within The Doe Fund as a Transportation Dispatcher and Case Manager. In all capacities, he acts as a skilled mentor to individuals with past contact with the criminal system, substance use disorders and other challenges. Mr. Martinez, a Brooklyn native (Bedford Stuyvesant, Bushwick and East New York have all been home!), has personal experience of the criminal systems in New York and a nearby state, and the barriers these systems can create. He credits The Doe Fund, Community Service Society, his wife and family along with the wealth of caring people who restore his faith in humanity with helping him achieve his goals with much more to come. Special shout out to The Doe Fund Education Department and its caring, driven, professional empowering staff!
While in Federal Prison, Topeka K. Sam witnessed firsthand the epidemic and disparity of incarceration on women, more specifically women of color. She felt the urgency to bring the faces and voices of women in prison to the public in order to bring awareness to women’s incarceration and post-incarceration issues in order to change the criminal legal system.
After her release in 2015 and in response to what she saw and learned in prison, Topeka created The Ladies of Hope Ministries (The LOHM) an organization whose mission is to help disenfranchised and marginalized women transition back into society through education, entrepreneurship, spiritual empowerment, and advocacy. With Vanee Sykes, Topeka developed the vision for Hope House NYC while they were incarcerated. Hope House NYC is a safe housing space for formerly incarcerated women located in the Castle Hill neighborhood of the Bronx.
Topeka K. Sam is a '2017 Soros Justice Fellowship' recipient. Her fellowship, The Probation and Parole Accountability Project focuses on the broken and arbitrary probation and parole systems. Her op-ed, It’s Time to Overhaul America’s Broken Probation and Parole Systems, was published widely. Sam is a '2015 Beyond the Bars Fellow' and a '2016 Justice in Education Scholar both at Columbia University'.
In early December, in partnership with Grammy-winner and activist John Legend's FREE AMERICA and Bank of America, New Profit, Topeka was named as one of eight people to the first cohort of Unlocked Futures, an accelerator for social innovators who have been impacted directly by the criminal justice system.
Additionally, Topeka is consulting with Senators Cory Booker and Elizabeth Warren on the Dignity for Incarcerated Women Act, and she has been a TEDxMidAtlantic presenter. In December 2017, Topeka was one of three women who met with Nancy Pelosi, Barbara Lee, Shelia Jackson Lee and 17 other members of the Democratic Women’s Working Group where she spoke with them about the realities faced every day by incarcerated and formerly incarcerated women.
Sunday, December 31st, 2017, on page 1 of the Metropolitan Section of the New York Times, featured a story about Topeka K. Sam’s vision to creating and now struggle to a safe house for formerly incarcerated women “A House for Women Leaving Prison Sits Empty”.
On January 7th, 2018 and on every Sunday at 9 AM est., Topeka K. Sam hosts the weekly show, Last Mile, Second Chances on SXMUrbanView Ch. 126. (http://www.siriusxm.com). Due to an overwhelming response to her show, as of July 8th, 2018 it was relaunched as The Topeka K. Sam Show. As of February 1st, 2018, Topeka was named the Director of the #Dignity Campaign for #cut50.
Sam, a founding member of the National Council of Incarcerated and Formerly Incarcerated Women and Girls (“National Council”), has spoken widely about the issues of incarceration, post-incarceration, and the carceral state. In her past role as National Organizer with the National Council, she created and produced “Real Women, Real Voices” symposia at eleven law schools nationwide.
Bernard Gassaway is a student and a teacher. As a student, he strives to discover how to become the ultimate learner. As a teacher, he strives to enable and empower his students to discover their life’s passions through inquiry and deliberation.
Bernard has authored four books: Reflections of an Urban High School Principal, Education Denied: Children Challenges and Choices, Helping Principals Build Partnerships, and Gassaway’s Principles for Principals: Caring and Effective Leadership.
Bernard has served as a teacher, assistant principal, principal, superintendent and community stakeholder in New York City. In each capacity, he has relied on his childhood experiences to serve as an anchor for his guiding principles and theory of action.
Bernard earned his B.A. in English from Le Moyne College, Syracuse, N.Y., M.P.A. from SUNY at Albany, Albany, N.Y., Master’s of Education and Supervision from Baruch College, N.Y., N.Y., Master’s of Education from Columbia University’s Teachers College, N.Y. and Doctor of Education from Columbia University’s Teachers College.
Of all of Bernard’s accomplishments, he is most proud of his role as father to Atiya Lilly-Gassaway. She continues to help shape him as a leading national educational leader and teacher.
Bernard was born in Macon, Georgia but raised in Brooklyn, New York along with his six siblings. He currently resides in Baldwin, New York.