Guest Speakers

Guest Speakers for February 2

Kevin Yates
I'm an ex-felon (2 counts robbery) and recovering addict who decided to create my own job. I had my rights restored and remain infraction free ever since 2002. I am a family man and community activist. My story of "change" is one difficult to write and easier to record. Ultimately, it's about finding what life is by first finding what life is not.
Organizational affiliation: Universal School Of Thought

Kim Green
In 2013, while a student at the College of William and Mary, Kim was charged with possession of marijuana. Kim completed Virginia's First Offender Program which included six-months of active probation, driver's suspension, fees, a 10 week drug rehabilitation program, random drug testing, and 24 hours of community service. After completing the program criminal records show that the crime was dismissed but cannot be expunged or “sealed” in the state of Virginia. “Probation felt like a lifetime, but definitely stretched me in such a capacity that allowed me to reflect on things that were meaningful to me: like the freedom to move.” Kim currently serves as the Fellow for Education Programs in the Office of Community Engagement.

Grace Covello
I am a recent 2016 graduate from The College of William and Mary. I am currently a graduate student at the University of Pennsylvania in the M.S.Ed. in Higher Education. I have had two family members previously or currently incarcerated and have been to multiple prisons and correctional centers across the state of Virginia to visit them. Due to being around the criminal justice system my whole life I have taken studied the system in college both at the undergraduate and graduate level. I look forward to the speaker series and meeting you all back at a place that I love!

David Benedict
Since retiring to Williamsburg in 1998, I've been actively volunteering in assisting those in the community who have been 'left-out or left-behind.' I've been most involved with the homeless, being a founding member of the Greater Williamsburg Outreach Mission to the homeless. I was also in 2003 a founding member of Williamsburg Walk the Talk program mentoring ex-offenders returning to our community. This is my 14th year assisting inmates at the Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail.
Organizational affiliation: 3e Restoration Inc,

Lillie Branch-Kennedy
Lillie Branch-Kennedy, Founder and Executive Director of RIHD, has over 16 years of experience leading a state-level grass-root towards eradicating racial bias from the criminal justice sentencing process and empowering disenfranchised communities. RIHD has a strong drive to help the disenfranchised and economically disadvantaged people through statewide support services that includes self-help programs, legislative advocacy, restoration of civil & voting rights application assistance, voter registration and transportation services for families seeking to visit loved ones incarcerated around the state. They have organized a state-wide Mobile Justice Tour to provide educational workshops to Virginians on navigating the criminal justice system, which has visited over 60 cities. RIHD also became a key organization in implementing ban-the-box, the FCC's curtailing of prison phone costs, as well as improved prison conditions for individuals incarcerated in Virginia state prisons.

During the imposition of the “Truth in Sentencing Laws,” and elimination of parole by Virginia in 1995, several sentencing errors occurred affecting thousands that remain incarcerated. These sentencing errors were brought to the attention of Gov. McAuliffe’s 2015-16 Commission on Parole and the commission in its final report issued a recommendation that said sentencing “errors” are corrected. RIHD is working to educate lawmakers and policy advocates and communities on additional sentencing reforms and remedy.
Organizational affiliation: Resource Information Help for the Disadvantaged and Disenfranchised (RIHD),

Samantha Weaver
I'm a paralegal with a civil rights legal organization and I primarily work on equal employment opportunity and police misconduct cases right now but I used to do work with prisoners' rights (and still do a little bit). My brother was incarcerated when I was 16 and just got out in March of 2016. His incarceration motivated me to learn more about conditions of confinement and once I learned more, I knew I wanted to pursue the work professionally. Still figuring out how I want to make my way back into that work and what role I want to play.
Organizational affiliation: Washington Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs 

Danielle Green
Growing up with a brother incarcerated since 1997, who is sentenced to serving a life sentence for first degree murder, Danielle "Danny" Greene '12 has spent much of her life closely involved with the American prison system. Her biweekly Sunday visits with her brother guide her career, as she works as an 8th grade Civics and Economics teacher trying to elevate her students from the grips of criminalization and marginalization of black and brown bodies in an impoverished school district.

Guest Speakers for February 9

Jan Roltsch-Anoll
Judge, Prince William County Juvenile & Domestic Relations District Court

Sarah Scarbrough
Dr. Sarah Scarbrough works as Program Director in the Richmond City Justice Center (RCJC) under Richmond Sheriff C.T. Woody, Jr. In this capacity, Dr. Scarbrough provides oversight and supervision to all programs offered to jail residents of the Justice Center. She is charged with creating new opportunities for program availability for residents, to ensure a successful re-entry back into the community.
Organizational affiliation: Richmond City Sheriff's Office

Greg Riley
I have served with the Williamsburg Police Department for nearly 27 years. I am currently the Major in charge of the Special Operations Bureau of the department which primarily oversees the investigation of major crimes. During my career, I have served as a patrol officer, investigator, training instructor, field training officer, and street supervisor.
Organizational affiliation: Williamsburg Police Department

Patricia Michelsen-King
I am Colombian and came as a teenager to the U.S. I am a federal certified interpreter and work in courts interpreting for Spanish speaking defendants, victims, and witnesses. I teach translation, legal and medical interpretation at VCU. I help those who don't have a voice and want to talk about the unheard injustice.
Organizational affiliation: Virginia Commonwealth University

John Whalen
I am currently the Supervisor of Education at the Merrimac Detention Center. I work through the Virginia Department of Education office of State Operated Programs to provide educational services to the youth at Merrimac.
Organizational affiliation: Merrimac Detention Center,

Master Police Officer Monique Marchand
Master Officer Monique Marchand was raised in Portsmouth, VA where she graduated from Churchland High School in 2000. She went on to receive her Bachelors of Science in Criminal Justice from Pennsylvania State University in 2004. Additionally, she has obtained her Master's Degree in Criminal Justice from Troy University in 2015. MPO Marchand began her Law Enforcement Career with the Portsmouth Police Department in 2004 before moving on to the James City County Police Department in 2006. Upon being employed by the James City County Police Department, MPO Marchand was assigned to the Uniform Patrol Division on Evening Shift before transferring to Day Shift. In February 2014 MPO Marchand transferred to the Community Services Unit where she is a Certified Crime Prevention Specialist and Bicycle Patrol Officer. MPO Marchand serves as a General Instructor, CPR Instructor, RAD Instructor and radKIDS Instructor.
Organizational affiliation: Officer Marchand is a current member of Law Enforcement United.

Valerie Slater
Valerie is a juvenile justice attorney with Legal Aid Justice Center and Coordinator for the RISE for Youth Coalition. RISE stands for Reinvesting In Supportive Environments and RISE for Youth is a campaign in support of community alternatives to youth incarceration in Virginia. Valerie's work focuses on educating communities and policy makers on the detrimental effects of youth incarceration; advancing efforts to create community based rehabilitative models as alternatives to incarceration; advocating for the rights of incarcerated youth; and closing juvenile prisons. Previously, Valerie worked at the disAbility Law Center of Virginia, the Commonwealth's protection and advocacy agency. While at dLCV, Valerie worked to protect the rights of children with disabilities in the community, in residential facilities and in juvenile justice facilities throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. Her work focused on issues related to special education, transition, conditions of confinement, and access to services. Valerie has dedicated her life's work to advocacy in its many forms to preserve and protect our Commonwealth's most valuable resource, our youth.
Organizational Affiliation: Legal Aid Justice Center,

Michael A. Jones
I concluded a successful and rewarding career as Chief of Police for the Virginia Capitol Police in June of 2007. However, my desire to serve my community has not been retired. I continue to continue to serve my country and community by finding opportunities that will allow me to utilize the many specialized skills that I have developed over 40 years in law enforcement, academia and private business. I am driven to serve and I feel that it is my duty to share my abilities in a way that contributes to the greater good of society, with visions for the future and integrity in all aspects and opportunities for growth.
Organizational Affiliation: Major Security Consulting

Regenea Hurte
For the better part of the last 10 years I have been involved with the criminal justice system. I began as an Assistant Public Defender in the City of Portsmouth then transitioned to the City of Newport News as an Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney. In both roles I dealt with adults and juveniles with a myriad of factors contributing the position they found themselves in. I took great pride in specializing in Juvenile criminal justice and the unique circumstances of that area of the law. Currently, I am the Public Benefits Staff Attorney at Virginia Poverty Law Center in Richmond where u continue to advocate for low-income Virginians.
Organizational Affiliation: Virginia Poverty Law Center

Guest Speakers for February 16

Kayla Armstrong
I am a senior at the College of William & Mary, and I am majoring in English and Psychology. For the past three years I have been involved with Merrimac Mentors, an organization that mentors youth from the Merrimac Juvenile Detention Center on a weekly basis. The other mentors and I also work to raise awareness among the W&M community of mass incarceration and juvenile justice issues.
Organizational affiliation: Merrimac Mentors

Keosha Branch
Keosha Branch is a third year Doctoral Candidate at the College of William & Mary and the Clinical Director at Bacon Street Youth and Family Services. She has extensive experiences providing mental health and substance use counseling services to those incarcerated and was the Mental Health Director at a jail in the city of Richmond for three years. Currently, she provides counseling services to adolescents and their families involved in the legal system.
Organizational affiliation: Bacon Street Youth and Family Services,

W.B. "Bill" Twine
I have been a chaplain working within the Virginia Department of Corrections since 1987. My advocacy is primarily with Va. CURE, an organization which I have been a part of since 1990. I am also involved with Re-entry, housing 25 ex offenders in four houses in the Norfolk area.
Organizational affiliation: GraceInside and Virginia CURE,;

Trey Hartt
Trey Hartt is the Deputy Director at ART 180. He comes to ART 180 with experiences in the traditional development role as well as arts advocacy, grassroots organizing, and using art as a tool for social change. Currently, he is a board member of The Conciliation Project, a Richmond-based social justice theatre company that sparks dialogue on racism and other forms of oppression, and is President of the Board of Directors for Alternate ROOTS, a regional organization that supports the creation and presentation of original art to eliminate oppression. As Deputy Director, Trey manages ART 180's fund development, operations, and special projects like their juvenile justice programming.
Organizational affiliation: ART 180,

Gina Lyles
Gina is the Program Coordinator for ART 180's juvenile justice programs, helping incarcerated youth find their voice, using their creative voices as a catalyst to reform the juvenile justice system in Virginia. Based on her own life experience, Gina is able to navigate and empower youth caught in the school-to-prison pipeline. Her passion is working with young people to motivate them and remind them that “trouble don't last always,” based on her own experiences navigating the criminal justice system. Gina is a poet, singer, host and emcee, aka DA Paper Lady.
Organizational affiliation: ART 180,

Leslie Bowie
Leslie Bowie is Lead Teacher for WJCC Schools Adult Education / GED program. The program provides adult basic education and GED preparation classes within the community as well as at the VA Peninsula Regional Jail.
Organizational affiliation: Williamsburg-James City County Public Schools Adult Education / GED Program

Judy Clarke
Judith Tolleson Clarke, MA, VCRJ Executive Director, completed her MA in Conflict Transformation with a concentration in Restorative Justice at Eastern Mennonite University. Under a three year grant from the US Department of Labor and Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, Judy provided restorative justice training and technical assistance in 10 different high poverty, high crime areas located throughout the US. She established a restorative justice diversion program for the Richmond City and Henrico County Juvenile Court Service Unit which is implemented by Volunteer Restorative Justice Facilitators. At the end of their first year, these volunteers diverted approximately 50 plus cases, affecting youthful offenders and their victims. Judy wrote a values-based, restorative justice curriculum, “How to Handle Conflict” and the VCRJ Volunteers facilitated a Circle Group in 8 different Virginia State Correctional Centers. A former Special Education Teacher, Judy wrote a 10 week "Community Game Changers" curriculum for elementary students and the VCRJ Volunteers implemented this class for Third Graders at Glen Lea Elementary School, Henrico County.
Organizational affiliation: Virginia Center for Restorative Justice, and Center for Restorative Justice

Linda Palmer
I have volunteered for Colonial CASA for the last 5 years, representing the voice of abused or neglected children in the Court system. Currently, I am working with 2 families, each with one child, ages 6 months and 15 years. In both cases, mental health issues, safety, and incarceration are predominant concerns. Recently, I retired as the manager of a family business, but through CASA use my training in elementary school counseling.
Organizational affiliation: Colonial CASA,

Robert E. Wright
I fit under all three of your Guest Speaker Topics: Formerly Incarcerated, Family Members, Translator, Advocate, Nonprofit, and allies.
Organizational affiliation: Long list, Colonial Behavior Health, Salvation Army, AA, NA, United Way Of Greater Williamsburg Guest House ReEntry Program

Leah Roemer
I'm a sophomore Sociology major at the College, and I serve as the Club Coordinator for Merrimac Mentors, a service group on campus. We volunteer with incarcerated youth at Merrimac Juvenile Detention Center and seek to create positive mentoring relationships with the residents there. As a program we also explore the inner workings of the justice system and how it impacts different groups of people.
Organizational affiliation: Merrimac Mentors

Brian Chad Starks
Dr. Brian Chad Starks is a speaker, author and critical criminologist. For more than twenty years, he has worked to build social justice and equity for individuals, organizations and communities. The former owner of B. Chad Bonding, Dr. Starks holds a Master's degree in Criminal Justice from the University of South Carolina and a doctorate in Criminology from the University of Delaware. As CEO of BCS & Associates Consulting Firm, Dr. Starks travels around the country, speaking and teaching the truth about implicit bias, cultural competency, and structural inequality.
Organizational affiliation: BCS & Associates Consulting Firm,

Jim Ramage
Jim served in the Navy in submarines before beginning his 30 year career with Delta Air Lines. He moved to Williamsburg in 1997 and was drawn to volunteering with organizations to assist the homeless. He is a mentor of inmates at the regional jail for Walk the Talk. He also serves on the Social Services Advisory Board and the Citizens Emergency Response team for the City of Williamsburg as well as on the advisory board for Spirit Works here in Williamsburg.
Organizational affiliation: Williamsburg Walk the Talk

Sara Conlon
Sara Conlon serves as the Executive Director of OAR of Richmond, Inc. OAR serves adults that are currently incarcerated in the Richmond area as well as adults in the community that have been released from jail or prison. Sara is a dedicated advocate on behalf of her client's rights and is always found educating others on the barriers that individuals face after incarceration. Sara has many years of experience in nonprofit work. She is a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University and completed her Master of Divinity at Campbell University Divinity School. Sara is the convener of the Richmond Regional Reentry Council, a member of the City of Richmond Evidence Based Decision Making team, and a trainer for Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services. Sara is currently involved with advocacy work on behalf of her clients at the General Assembly.
Organizational Affiliation: OAR of Richmond, Inc.,

Emma Munis
Emma Munis is a junior at the College of William and Mary passionate about Juvenile Justice Reform and education within juvenile detention centers. She works with other students on campus to mentor residents at a local Williamsburg detention center.
Organizational affiliation: Merrimac Mentors

Benjamin Lazarus
I'm a Merrimac Mentor. We work with residents of a local juvenile detention center and do a variety of activities with them that range from games that are purely fun to heavier conversations about life aspirations and what sort of legacy we want to leave behind. This is going to be my third semester mentoring and I'm currently on the Merrimac Mentors leadership team.
Organizational affiliation: Merrimac Mentors

Danielle Dallaire
Danielle Dallaire is an Associate Professor of Psychology at the College of William & Mary and a faculty affiliate of the Public Health and Community Studies programs. Her research examines children's social and emotional development in the context of risk, and specifically how children and families cope with the multifaceted stress of parental incarceration. Professor Dallaire has published widely on the topic of parental incarceration in peer-reviewed journals and served as a consultant for the Virginia Department of Corrections and was appointed to Governor of Virginia's Family Reintegration Subcommittee. Her research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, March of Dimes, Kellogg Foundation and Anthem Foundation.
Organizational affiliation: The William & Mary Healthy Beginnings Project