Panelists' Biographies

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Note: In addition to our amazing speakers, numerous local community organizations will be on site to table and share information during the Conference.

Keynote Speaker - Prof. Bruce Western

Bruce Western is Professor of Sociology and the Daniel and Florence Guggenheim Professor of Criminal Justice Policy. He is the Director of the Malcolm Wiener Center for Social Policy and the Faculty Chair of the Program in Criminal Justice Policy and Management at the John F. Kennedy School of Government. Western's research broadly studies the relationship between political institutions and social and economic inequality. He has longstanding interests in criminal justice policy, incarceration, and the effects of incarceration on poor communities. He is the author of Punishment and Inequality in America, a study of the growth and social impact of the American penal system. His first book, Between Class and Market, examined the development and decline of labor unions in the postwar industrialized democracies. He is currently studying the social impact of rising income inequality in the United States. Western taught at Princeton from 1993 to 2007 and received his Ph.D. in sociology from UCLA.

Bruce Western's website

Daryl V. Atkinson, Southern Coalition for Social Justice

Panelist, Modern Prisons and Household Economies

Daryl Atkinson is a staff attorney at SCSJ focusing on criminal justice reform issues. Daryl received a B.A. in Political Science from Benedict College, Columbia, SC and a J.D. from the University of St. Thomas School of Law, Minneapolis, MN. Prior to coming to SCSJ, Daryl was a staff attorney at the North Carolina Office of Indigent Defense Services (IDS) where he co-managed the Collateral Consequence Assessment Tool (C-CAT). C-CAT is an online searchable database that allows the user to identify the civil disabilities triggered by North Carolina arrests, indictments, and convictions. Because of Daryl’s intimate knowledge of collateral consequences he was chosen to serve on an advisory committee for the American Bar Association’s collateral consequence project.

Since moving to North Carolina in 2007, Daryl has been active in both the prisoner reentry and legal service communities. He is a founding member of the North Carolina Second Chance Alliance, a burgeoning statewide coalition of advocacy organizations, service providers, faith-based organizations and community leaders that have come together to achieve the safe and successful reintegration of adults and juveniles returning home from incarceration. Moreover, Daryl served on a subcommittee of Governor Beverly Perdue’s Task Force to Stop Repeat Offenders. Most notably, Daryl and the Durham Second Chance Alliance led the first successful Ban the Box campaign in North Carolina, which resulted in the City of Durham adopting an administrative policy that removed the question about criminal convictions from the city employment application.

Learn more about the Southern Coalition for Social Justice

Tychist Baker, Milk Not Jails

Panelist, Modern Prisons and Household Economies

Tychist Baker is a founding member of Milk Not Jails and the Sales & Operations Manager of the Milk Not Jails marketing and distribution cooperative. A worker-owner of Milk Not Jails, Tychist manages the Milk Not Jails warehouse and sales outreach. Tychist uses truth and humor to engage different communities and potential clients--from the forgotten ghettos to rural prison towns. Tychist spent 7 years, 4 months and 14 days in New York's prison system for drug-related charges. He was only released due to the monumental Rockefeller Drug Law reforms, which forced the state to reduce sentences for non-violent, first-time drug offenders. A father and primary parent of three children, Tychist also spends a lot of time care-taking and teaching Kemetic Science (the ways of ancient Egypt). In his free time, he teaches martial arts and anti-rape self-defense to girls and women in his communities.

Learn more about Milk Not Jails

Daniel Bowes, Staff Attorney, Collateral Consequences of Criminal Convictions Project of the NC Justice Center

Panelist, Who Are We Really Punishing? Envisioning Family Supporting Options for those Affected by Mass Incarceration

Daniel joined the Justice Center as a Staff Attorney and Equal Justice Works Fellow in 2011. He advocates and litigates on behalf of individuals and communities suffering the collateral consequences of criminal convictions. His work is sponsored by American Legal Media. Before coming to the Justice Center, Daniel served as an Autry Fellow at MDC, Inc., and authored the City of Durham’s Root Causes of Crime in Durham Study.

Daniel was an Alyse Smith Cooper Scholar at Duke University and a Root-Tilden-Kern Public Interest Scholar at the New York University School of Law.

Kimberly Brown

Panelist, Prison's Families: Maintaining Ties Behind Bars

Kimberly Brown is the President/Owner of Brown Business Enterprises, LLC which features FJB Beading Co., and Brown Business Enterprises, LLC provides business consultation and development to felony transition based projects. She is the host of “Real Talk” with Kimberly Brown on (weeknights 5-8 p.m.). Kimberly is a seasoned professional with extensive experience in presenting to and working with diverse populations, organizing and managing complex campaigns, including marketing through effective oral and written communications.

Gary Cuddeback

Panelist, The Psychological Impact of Imprisonment on Prisoners and Their Families

Gary Cuddeback, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor at the School of Social Work and a Faculty Research Fellow at the Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He has Master’s degrees in Social Work and Public Health from the University of South Florida and he received his Ph.D. in Social Work from the University of Tennessee, where he also completed a minor in statistics. Dr. Cuddeback’s research interests include evidence-based practices and policies for persons with severe mental illnesses, particularly those who are involved with the criminal justice system. He has a number of publications on these topics, including papers on forensic assertive community treatment (Cuddeback et al., 2010), the physical health problems of justice-involved persons with severe mental illnesses (Cuddeback et al., 2010), the demographic and clinical profiles of justice-involved persons with severe mental illnesses (Cuddeback et al., 2010), the characteristics of persons with severe mental illnesses released from jails versus prisons (Cuddeback et al. 2013) and assertive community treatment and fidelity to recovery-oriented practices (Cuddeback et al., 2013). He has been principal investigator on studies of persons with severe mental illnesses who transition from assertive community treatment to less intensive services and the financial literacy of mental health court participants. Currently, he is conducting research about interpersonal violence and women with severe mental illnesses, diabetes and persons with severe mental illnesses, and integrated illness management and recovery and persons with severe mental illnesses. Also, he is principal investigator of two randomized studies of justice involved persons with severe mental illness, one focused on mental health courts and another on specialty mental health probation.

Dennis Gaddy, Executive Director, Community Success Initiative

Panelist, Incarceration, its Impact on Poor Families, and its Contribution to Class Inequality in our Communities

Dennis Gaddy is the Executive Director of the Community Success Initiative (CSI), a non profit organization that was created out of a desire to fill a need to see personal growth and development, and leadership principles become a recognized strategy for achieving success in the lives of everyday people, with an emphasis on men and women transitioning from prison, or those who find themselves entangled in the criminal justice system.

A graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill and the Campbell University School of Law, Dennis had a successful career in sales and marketing for 20 years. However after that, due to some poor financial decisions he experienced the pain of bankruptcy, the loss of his law license, and prison. Dennis was incarcerated for five years, eight months in the NC Department of Corrections. Rather than being overcome by either success or failure, Dennis studied both, and learned valuable and positive insights from the past. He learned the value of using the past as a place of reference, but not residence, and designed and teaches a 15-Step leadership course on "How To Get From Where You Are To Where You Want To Be".

Along with his duties at CSI, Dennis currently serves on the Board of Directors of The Triangle Lost Generation Task Force, a organization helping to stem the tide of African-American and Latino youth from going to prison, and also serves as the Criminal Justice Chair for the North Carolina NAACP.

Dennis also serves on a national reentry sub-committee, for the Center for State Government's National Reentry Resource Center; most recently, Dennis was selected as a Goodman Award from Leadership Triangle--- the award is named after Jim Goodman, Pres/CEO of Capital Broadcasting and parent company of WRAL-TV, Raleigh, NC.

Community Success Initiative

Philip Genty, Everett B. Birch Innovative Teaching Clinical Professor in Professional Responsibility, Columbia School of Law

Panelist, Prison's Families: Maintaining Ties Behind Bars

Philip M. Genty is the Everett B. Birch Innovative Teaching Clinical Professor in Professional Responsibility at Columbia Law School. He joined the Columbia faculty in 1989. He teaches the Prisoners and Families Clinic and professional responsibility, and he directs and teaches in the first-year Moot Court program. His research interests are in prisoners' rights, family law, clinical education, and legal ethics. He has taught and consulted on clinical legal education and legal ethics in Central and Eastern Europe and Israel. He has developed legal resource materials for incarcerated parents and works with several organizations that assist women who are in prison. He received Columbia Law School's 2008 Willis L.M.Reese Prize for Excellence in Teaching. Prior to coming to Columbia, he taught at Brooklyn Law School, and worked as an attorney at Prisoners' Legal Services of New York, the New York City Department of Housing, Preservation and Development, and the Bedford-Stuyvesant Community Legal Services Corporation.

Philip Genty's website

Carolina Ginley, Program Manager, The Community Resource Court

Panelist, The Psychological Impact of Imprisonment on Prisoners and Their Families

Caroline Ginley is the Program Manager for the Community Resource Court. She has been working with the Community Resource Court since 2005. Her educational background includes a BSW degree from the University of New Hampshire and a MSW degree from the University of North Carolina School of Social Work. She has been a licensed Clinical Social Worker since 2012. Caroline has extensive experience working in the field of community mental health and has primarily worked with individuals with serious mental illness. She is a field instructor for the UNC School of Social Work and enjoys mentoring students.

Scott Holmes, Supervising Attorney for the Civil Litigation Clinic, NCCU School of Law

Panelist, Incarceration, its Impact on Poor Families, and its Contribution to Class Inequality in our Communities

Scott Holmes is a Quaker Attorney from Durham. He is Clinical Professor of Law at the North Carolina Central Law School where he supervises the Civil Litigation Clinic which handles civil rights matters and provides legal aid to poor folks. He is an adjunct professor of Restorative Justice at Guilford College in Greensboro. He has recently been representing Moral Monday protesters arrested in the North Carolina General Assembly, young Dream Team immigration activists, and panhandlers charged with the crime of begging in Durham. He also advocates for Restorative Justice at the United Nations Commission on Crime in Vienna on behalf of the Friends World Committee for Consultation.

He graduated with honors from the University of North Carolina law School in 1998, and was among a group of law students who helped organize the first few Conferences on Race, Class, Gender and Ethnicity at UNC law.

Tracy Huling, Founder, Prison Public Memory Project, National Resource Center on Prisons and Communities, and the Women in Jail and Prison Project of the Correctional Association of New York

Panelist, Modern Prisons and Household Economies

For the last 15 years Tracy Huling has conducted groundbreaking work and authored several publications on the complex relationships between prison reform, rural community well-being, and the use of prisons as rural economic development in New York and throughout the United States. She also is a leading social entrepreneur and founded the Prison Public Memory Project, the National Resource Center on Prisons and Communities, and the Women in Jail and Prison Project of the Correctional Association of New York where she served as Director of Public Policy. She has consulted with a wide range of national and regional rural organizations including the Rural Policy Research Institute and the Southern Rural Development Initiative, and provided assistance to hundreds of groups in rural communities, including local chambers of commerce and economic development agencies. Huling has also produced and directed documentary films, including Yes, In My Backyard, the first film portrait of a prison town. Huling will help policymakers, advocates and community leaders identify, document and implement effective ways to close state prisons in rural America. She is a 2012 Open Society Fellow, where she focused on best practices in the closure of prisons in rural areas, alternatives to prison industries, and successful adaptive re-use of correctional facilities. She is a long-time resident of upstate New York.

Trish Hussey, Executive Director, Freedom House

Panelist, The Psychological Impact of Imprisonment on Prisoners and Their Families

Trish Hussey directs Freedom House, a North Carolina non-profit that responds to the needs of individuals with substance abuse addiction and mental illness by providing crisis stabilization, long and short term residential programs, social setting and non-hospital medical detoxification, halfway house programs, outpatient psychiatric services and intensive outpatient programs.

For more than 30 years, their mission has been to help alcoholics and drug addicts and people with mental illnesses by providing the tools necessary to lead a life of recovery and to become productive members of the community. Freedom House is concerned with the emotional, physical, spiritual and social needs of those we serve.

Sarah Jobe, Project TURN

Panelist, Prison's Families: Maintaining Ties Behind Bars

Rev. Sarah Jobe serves as a chaplain at Raleigh Correctional Center for Women. She is the founder of Project TURN, a program that offers seminary style classes inside of North Carolina prisons, and she continues to teach courses on spiritual development and biblical studies in that program. Rev. Jobe received her M.Div. from Duke Divinity School with a focus on Hebrew Bible and Gender Studies. She lives with her family at the Rutba House, an intentional Christian community in Durham, NC. She is the author of Creating with God: The Holy Confusing Gift of Pregnancy.

Learn more about Project TURN

Prof. Joseph Kennedy, UNC School of Law

Panelist, Modern Prisons and Household Economies

Joseph Kennedy is a Professor of Law at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he has taught Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure Investigation, Computer Crime Law, Criminal Justice Policy, Constitutional Law, and International and Comparative Criminal Law. Kennedy taught International Law and Intellectual Property at Northwest University in Xi'an, China during the spring semester of 2012 on a Fulbright Lecture Award. Kennedy served as Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at UNC Law School for the 2005-06 academic year. Professor Kennedy's research interests include the sociology and politics of mass incarceration and criminal law.

Prof. Kennedy's website

Michele Luecking-Sunman, NC Prisoner Legal Services

Panelist, The Psychological Impact of Imprisonment on Prisoners and Their Families

George O'Briant

Panelist, Who Are We Really Punishing? Envisioning Family Supporting Options for those Affected by Mass Incarceration

George O’Briant is originally from Roxboro, NC. He, his mother, and three sisters later relocated to Durham, NC in 1985. He attended Hillside High School from 1986 -1988 but completed his GED and food training at Oconaluftee Job Corp in Cherokee, NC in 1988. George worked in food service for the next 21 years. Life has also given him his share of trials including incarceration for 5 years and the recent loss of a younger sister in 2012. As he persevered thru, Mr. O’Briant remained optimistic as he began to change his life around – while incarcerated. After his release from prison George has been a very productive and proactive member of society in more ways than one by participating in various prosocial activities. An avid volunteer for Habitat for Humanity, he has coached little league baseball, Jr. NBA basketball, community outreach with his church as well as community projects and iniatiatives. He also is a basketball referee in the Triangle.

After going cold turkey on the food service industry he is currently enrolled at Wake Technical Community College pursuing his Associates Degree in Human Science –with concentration of Substance Abuse Counselor & Case Management. Other accomplishments include:

  • Business Administration – Roanoke-Chowan Community College
  • Certified NC Peer Support Specialist
  • Certified NC Mental Health Crisis Responder
  • Certified as "Offender Employment Specialist"
  • Certified CBI (Cognitive Behavioral Intervention) Facilitator
  • Testimonial and Motivational Speaker
  • Seat on the NC State Corrections Advisory Board - 2014–2016

For the past 3 years, Mr. O’Briant has been employed with the Durham County Criminal Justice Resource Center working in Community Based Corrections, case management, reentry program, and employment services. Married and residing in Raleigh, Mr. O’Briant continues to be an example of change and in doing so he shares his life and encourages others to live the right way.

Marcia Owen, Director of the Religious Coalition for a Nonviolent Durham

Panelist, Who Are We Really Punishing? Envisioning Family Supporting Options for those Affected by Mass Incarceration

Marcia Owen is the director of the Religious Coalition for a Nonviolent Durham, an organization whose mission is to to prevent and rectify the injustice of violence that segregates Durham. The coalition works with members of Durham’s faith, governmental, educational, health, and advocacy organizations to encourage, facilitate, and promote institutional reform and individual acts of compassion and reconciliation. Since 2004, the coalition has facilitated a Reconciliation and Reentry Ministry that pairs recently released prisoners with faith teams in hopes of reconnecting the former offender with the Durham community and providing support throughout the reentry process.

Prof. Jon Powell, Campbell University School of Law, Restorative Justice Clinic

Panelist, Who Are We Really Punishing? Envisioning Family Supporting Options for those Affected by Mass Incarceration

Attorney Jon Powell serves as the Director of the Juvenile Justice Project (JJP), a collaborative effort of the N.C. Governor's Crime Commission and the Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law at Campbell University. The program receives referrals from the juvenile justice system, juvenile court, Wake County Schools and the Capital Area Teen Court program.

The goals of the project are to:

  • Give juveniles the opportunity to take responsibility for and become accountable for their actions.
  • Give victims the opportunity to learn about and be intimately involved in the outcome of their case.
  • Give all parties the opportunity to create an agreement that will address and resolve the harm caused by criminal activity.
  • Involve law students in the process of victim/offender mediation as active mediators.

Throughout this mediation process, law students are involved as active co-mediators with trained law school faculty. This clinical experience provides valuable experience to law students in learning ways to approach and resolve problems which occur from criminal activity.

Part of the mission of the Juvenile Justice Project is to help spread the word of Restorative Justice throughout the state of North Carolina and to assist others in the state in starting Restorative Justice programming. Jon has spoken on many occasions to various groups on the topic of Restorative Justice and has assisted organizations in starting mediation programs based on the Campbell model. Campbell Law School is privileged to be hosting the third National Conference on Restorative Justice in June of 2011 and Mr. Powell will serve as the lead planner.

Prior to working with the project, Jon practiced law in Wake and Harnett counties. Jon’s primary focus was in criminal defense with an emphasis on juvenile law. Mr. Powell received his law degree from Campbell University in 1998.

Melissa Radcliff, Executive Director, Our Children's Place

Panelist, Prison's Families: Maintaining Ties Behind Bars

Melissa Radcliff is the Executive Director of Our Children's Place, a private, nonprofit agency that is committed to the children of incarcerated parents and strives to be the leading North Carolina advocate and educational resource focused on these children and the need for a statewide response to ensure their well-being. She has worked as an advocate for victims of sexual and domestic violence, and is the former director and a founding staff member of the Family Violence Prevention Center of Orange County (now the Compass Center for Women and Families).

Jonathan Rapping, President and Founder, Gideon's Promise

Panelist, Incarceration, its Impact on Poor Families, and its Contribution to Class Inequality in our Communities

Jonathan Rapping is the President and Founder of Gideon’s Promise. Jon is the Director of the Honors Program in Criminal Justice at Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School, where he also teaches criminal law and criminal procedure. He is also a Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School where he helps to run its prestigious Trial Advocacy Workshop.

He is the former Training Director of the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia (PDS), an office nationally known for its training program. Following his tenure at PDS, in 2004 Jon became the first Training Director of Georgia’s new state-wide public defender system. In that capacity he was responsible for designing training programs for both legal and non-legal staff statewide. Jon then became the Director of Training and Recruitment for the Orleans Public Defenders, where he was integral in the efforts to rebuild the public defender system in post-Katrina New Orleans.

In recognition of his work in New Orleans, he was a co-recipient of the prestigious Lincoln Leadership Award, given by Kentucky’s Department of Public Advocacy to honor leadership in national efforts to improve indigent defense. Jon has trained public defenders all over the country, and was awarded a Soros Justice Advocacy Fellowship to develop Gideon’s Promise.

In 2009, Jon was named a Wasserstein Public Interest Fellow by the Harvard Law School Office of Public Interest in recognition of his contribution to the public interest through his work with the Gideon’s Promise. In 2013 Jon and Gideon’s Promise were awarded the Sentencing Project Award from the National Association of Sentencing Advocates and Mitigation Specialists and the Gideon’s Promise Award from the Southern Center for Human Rights. Also that year he was invited to serve as the Public Interest Scholar in Residence at Touro Law School in recognition of his work with Gideon’s Promise.

Allison Riggs, Southern Coalition for Social Justice, Voting Rights

Panelist, Incarceration, its Impact on Poor Families, and its Contribution to Class Inequality in our Communities

Allison Riggs is a staff attorney focusing on voting rights and environmental justice. She has been with SCSJ since 2009. Her voting rights work over the last four years has been focused on redistricting, and she has litigated redistricting cases on behalf of State NAACP Conferences in Texas, Florida and North Carolina. She has also been involved in defending the constitutionality of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act. She received her undergraduate, Master’s Degree and J.D. from the University of Florida. During law school, she was the student coordinator for the Restoration of Civil Rights Project–a student organization that provided assistance to applicants seeking to have the state of Florida restore to them their civil rights following a felony conviction.

Leah Sakala, Policy Analyst, Prison Policy Initiative

Panelist, Prison's Families: Maintaining Ties Behind Bars

Leah Sakala is a policy analyst at the Massachusetts-based Prison Policy Initiative, a national think tank where she has been working since 2008. She is the author of Return to Sender: Postcard-only Mail Policies in Jail, which the National Institute of Corrections called "required reading for policy makers and anyone working with individuals in jail custody." She also co-authored several reports, including Please Deposit All of Your Money: Kickbacks, Rates, and Hidden Fees in the Jail Phone Industry, which was the first report to address the hidden charges that can double the price of a call home from prison or jail. She graduated magna cum laude from Smith College.

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