Our Deck

The Problem

Government statistics tell us that more than 10,000 people leave state and federal prisons every week. Another 9 million people cycle through local jails on an annual basis. More than 19 million Americans have a felony record, with a disproportionate number of those people being black or Hispanic.

 

Our nation’s commitment to mass incarceration contributes to rising levels of poverty, homelessness, inequality, and intergenerational recidivism; 1 in 28 children has a parent behind bars.

 

Without pathways to fully integrate with society, more than 2/3rds of formerly incarcerated people face arrest within three years of release. Collateral consequences accompanying mass incarceration contribute to a cycle of failure, defined by high unemployment rates, homelessness, mental-health complications, and a general waste of human potential, burdening families and communities.

 

Prison Professors Charitable Corporation creates innovative solutions in response to the collateral consequences of mass incarceration.

The Solution

State and local governments spend more than $100 billion annually to fund the ecosystem that keeps mass incarceration growing. In response to this juggernaut, our team at the Prison Professors Charitable Corporation (PCCC) has created a multitiered approach as a response, or potential solution to the problem, including:

 

  • Creating and distributing digital content to help people afflicted by the criminal justice system, including people in jails and prisons, prepare to overcome the challenges ahead,
  • Working to create a temporary staffing agency that provides income opportunities for formerly incarcerated people,
  • Creating apprenticeship programs that help formerly incarcerated people develop self-directed income opportunities or careers in industries that will not discriminate against formerly incarcerated people,
  • Creating awareness on the collateral consequences of mass incarceration, including access to banking, housing, and career opportunities.
  • Creating and publishing video, audio, and written content to apprise taxpayers of the injustices of mass incarceration and offering suggestions to improve outcomes for people at every stage of the criminal justice system.

Our Unique Approach: An Ecosystem

Step 1: Teaching in Prison:

We’re continuing our path of building an ecosystem to improve outcomes for people at any stage of the criminal justice system. With previous sponsorship from the California Wellness Foundation, we’ve developed digital content that gives us a presence in jails and prisons across America. Through that work, we teach people in jails and prisons, the power of working to develop:

 

  • Stronger communication skills,
  • Stronger critical-thinking skills,
  • Self-driven work ethic

 

The digital courses we offer to people in custody differ from other coursework because of the authenticity: We show how such an approach influenced success for other people that transformed their lives while in custody, and we profile business leaders from across America. Our courses reach more than 100,000 people each year, and we’re growing.

 

Step 2: Career Training/Apprenticeship Programs

  • PPCC recognized that the pandemic would exacerbate challenges that formerly incarcerated people had in finding employment.
  • PPCC began creating job-training, apprenticeship programs for formerly incarcerated people.
  • PPCC created paid, personal-development programs that would qualify participants for income opportunities.
  • PPCC created an app that would allow participants to participate in career-development using a mobile device.

 

Step 3: Hiring Formerly Incarcerated People

  • In 2021, PPCC began creating income opportunities for people that emerged from the criminal justice system.
  • PPCC provides job training, without charge, to formerly incarcerated people.
  • PPCC provides payment for work that formerly incarcerated people complete.
  • In the fourth quarter of 2021, PPCC expects to write more than $20,000 in paychecks to formerly incarcerated people each month.
  • PPCC will continue creating high-paying jobs to formerly incarcerated people that advance through its rigorous training program.

 

Step 4: Publishing

  • Relying upon formerly incarcerated people, PPCC publishes more than 60 pieces of content each month.
  • All publications align with the stated mission of the nonprofit. That mission includes helping people overcome collateral consequences of mass incarceration, training people to qualify for income opportunities, informing people on the ways we can improve outcomes of the criminal justice system for people at every stage.

 

Step 5: Temporary Staffing Agency

  • PPCC is establishing a temporary staffing agency to provide a bridge to help more formerly incarcerated people transition into the labor market.
  • The temporary staffing agency will require applicants to proceed through self-directed leadership courses.
  • Members of the PPCC team has opened relationships with employers in California
  • Three employers have expressed interest in hiring formerly incarcerated people for labor or warehouse jobs, provided those people have worked through PPCC training courses.

Goals:

Short-term Goals:

  • In the short term, PPCC needs to launch a fundraising campaign to generate financial resources that will allow the nonprofit to fulfill its mission of improving outcomes for people at every stage of the criminal justice system.
  • PPCC has set an initial target of raising $300,000 by January 31, 2022.
  • The short-term goal of raising $300,000 will allow PPCC to hire a full-time executive director that the board approves.

 

Long-term Goals:

  • A full-time executive director (ED) will report to the board, agreeing to lead fund-raising targets to sustain the organization’s mission.
  • The ED should set specific fund-raising goals and create budgets that align with financial resources.
  • The ED will expand the internal team to 10 content creators, that publish a combined total of more than 250 articles / videos / audio files each month in response to the collateral consequences of mass incarceration.
  • Create relationships with a financial organization that will facilitate banking relationships or access to capital for formerly incarcerated people.
  • Create apprenticeship programs and internships in sectors that will not discriminate against formerly incarcerated people that can demonstrate a commitment to recalibrate and live as law-abiding, contributing citizens. Targeted internships/apprenticeship programs include:
    • Technical writing
    • Social media publishing
    • Graphic design
    • Digital publishing
    • Computer programming
    • Legal research
    • Advocacy
  • With more capacity, PPCC will continue to expand upon its mission, spreading more awareness on the overuse of America’s criminal justice system, and helping others overcome collateral consequences of mass incarceration.
  • The ED should open relationships with employers that sign MOUs with PPCC.
  • The ED will create relationships with community-based organizations that provide a labor supply to fill temporary-staffing jobs with formerly incarcerated people that have gone through our training program.
  • The ED will work to create a pricing mechanism for its staffing component that generates more resources to expand the organization’s mission of providing solutions in response to the collateral consequences of mass incarceration.

Vision:

Six months—September 2021 to February 2022:

  • Raise at least $300,000 to grow capacity of the nonprofit.

 

One year—January 2022 to December 2022:

  • Hire a full-time executive director that will work with us in creating a strategic plan in response to the collateral consequences of mass incarceration.
  • Create relationships with more institutions and organizations to distribute the digital content we create.
  • Create MOUs for both prospective employer partners, and community-based organizations that supply labor.
  • Oversee development of training programs that lead to career development for formerly incarcerated people.
  • Create communication systems to apprise board members and potential stakeholders of the work we’re doing to improve outcomes for people that experience any stage of America’s criminal justice system.
  • Build capacity that will allow us to create more jobs and apprenticeship programs for formerly incarcerated people.

 

Three years—January 2023 to December 2025:

  • Build a reach that will help us influence policy shifts on local, statewide, and national levels.
  • Create more solutions in response to the collateral consequences of mass incarceration, including:
    • Access to career development,
    • Access to housing,
    • Access to capital and banking.

Team:

Mike Berlon: Paid Formerly Incarcerated Advisor

Mike earned a law degree from the University of Georgia, and he previously served as the Chairman of the Democratic Party for Georgia. He assists our team with advancing the mission of our organization.

 

Tulio Cardozo: Paid Formerly Incarcerated Contributor

Tulio is a self-taught WordPress developer, and IT leader. He assist our team with advancing the mission of our organization.

 

Lawrence Hartman: Paid Formerly Incarcerated Contributor

Lawrence earned a law degree from Columbia University, and he assists our team with advancing the mission of our organization.

 

Agustin Huneeus: Unpaid Board Member / Advisor

Founder and CEO of privately held companies that have generated more than $100 million in revenues and employed more than 100 people. He assists our team with advancing the mission of our organization.

 

Nino Jefferson: Unpaid Board Member / Advisor

Founder and CEO of privately held companies that have generated more than $100 million in revenues and employed more than 100 people. He assists our team with advancing the mission of our organization.

 

Jerry Lundergan: Unpaid Board Member / Advisor

Founder and CEO of privately held companies that have generated more than $100 million in revenues and employed more than 100 people. He assists our team with advancing the mission of our organization.

 

Francis O’Reilly: Paid Formerly Incarcerated Contributor

Francis earned a law degree from Pace University, and he assists our team with advancing the mission of our organization.

 

Justin Paperny: Unpaid Formerly Incarcerated Board Member / Advisor

Justin graduated from USC, and for 10 years, he has worked to improve outcomes for people that experience the criminal justice system. He assists our team with advancing the mission of our organization.

 

James Patterson: Unpaid Board Member / Advisor

Jim served our country as an officer in the Air Force, and he has played leading roles in several technology companies. He assists our team with advancing the mission of our organization.

 

Keila Ravello: Formerly Incarcerated Contributor

Keila earned a law degree from Columbia University, and she assists our team with advancing the mission of our organization.

 

Michael Santos: Unpaid Formerly Incarcerated Board Member

While serving 26 years in prison, Michael prepared to emerge successfully. He earned an undergraduate degree and a graduate degree and published more than a dozen books and courses. Upon his release, in 2013, San Francisco State University hired him to become a professor, where he taught students about the collateral consequences of mass incarceration, while simultaneously worked to create programs that would improve outcomes of America’s criminal justice system. More than 100,000 people access Prison Professor courses each year.

 

Alap Shah: Paid Formerly Incarcerated Contributor

Alap previously worked as a podiatrist. He is overseeing the development of our app for mobile devices, and he assists our team with advancing the mission of our organization.