Board of Directors and Advisory Board
Board of Directors*
- Michelle Crentsil, Treasurer
Political Director, New York State Nurses Association (bio)
Michelle Crentsil is currently the Political Director of the New York State Nurses Association (NYSNA), New York's largest nurses union, where she directs the union's political and legislative efforts advocating for health equity and workplace safety. She is deeply committed to the labor movement and the overall fight for social justice. Prior to joining NYSNA's political department, Michelle organized physicians at the Committee of Interns & Residents (CIR/SEIU) and property services workers at SEIU Local 32BJ, working on their campaign to organize airport workers in New York and New Jersey. She also funded and advised political and advocacy campaigns nationwide to end mass incarceration while on staff at Open Philanthropy. She comes from a family of healthcare workers and advocates and holds a bachelor's degree in African American Studies and Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality from Harvard University.
- Sharon Cromwell, Clerk,
Deputy State Director, New York Working Families Party (bio)
Sharon Cromwell is the Deputy State Director of the New York Working Families Party. She has ten years of experience working with community-based organizations, labor unions, and advocacy organizations to launch new programs, develop member leaders, and lead legislative, budget and electoral campaigns. Prior to joining the Working Families Party, Sharon was the City Gun Violence Prevention Manager at Everytown for Gun Safety and previously worked on policy and strategic campaigns with SEIU 32BJ.
- Timothy Fisher, President,
Professor of Law, University of Connecticut School of Law (bio)
Tim Fisher recently completed a seven-year term as Dean at the University of Connecticut School of Law, where he is now is Professor of Law. Tim is the founder of the Connecticut Innocence Fund, a first-in-the-nation revolving loan fund that assists exonerees. He has served on Connecticut’s task force on racial disparity in jury selection, has worked in money bail reform. Prior to his service as Dean he was President of the Connecticut Bar Foundation, the primary funder of legal aid in the state. Tim was in the private practice of law prior to joining UConn; he lives with his wife in Hartford.
- Daniel Kopf, Director
2016 interview (bio)
Dan Kopf is the data editor of Quartz and
worked as a data scientist before becoming a journalist. He lives in
Oakland, California and has been volunteering with the Prison Policy
Initiative since February 2015. He is the co-author of several Prison
Policy Initiative reports, including The Racial Geography of Mass
by Bars and Miles:
Visitation in state prisons, Prisons of Poverty: Uncovering the
pre-incarceration incomes of the imprisoned, and Detaining the Poor: How money bail
perpetuates an endless cycle of poverty and jail time.
- Elena Lavarreda, Director
New Jersey Political Director, SEIU 32BJ (bio)
Elena Lavarreda is the New Jersey Political Director for SEIU 32BJ, a labor union that represents essential
building service workers and fights for economic, social, and racial
justice for all working people. Elena’s first job after graduating from
Smith College in 2008 was as a research associate for the Prison Policy
Initiative. Among other projects, she co-authored reports about prison
gerrymandering in Massachusetts,
Massachusetts report became the basis of a resolution that
passed the state legislature in August 2014. In 2013 Elena returned
as a consultant and researched the effects of prison gerrymandering on
school board districts. She
lives in Brooklyn, NY with her dog and partner.
- Paul Watterson, Director
Paul Watterson is counsel to a New York based law firm, Schulte Roth & Zabel. Previously he was an officer of a bank in New York and London, and he has held various government positions, including Assistant to the Mayor of New York City. He is a graduate of the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University and the Law School at Harvard University.
*Organizations for identification purposes only.
- Andrew Beveridge, Sociology, Queens College
- Lucius Couloute, Sociology, Suffolk University
- Alec Ewald, Political Science, University of Vermont
- Nora V. Demleitner,
Professor of Law, Washington and Lee University School of Law
- Alex Friedmann
- Ruth Wilson Gilmore, Earth and Environmental Sciences, City University of New York
- Barbara Graves-Poller, Senior Counsel, NYC Law Department, Appeals Division
- Ruth Greenwood, Co-Director of Voting Rights and Redistricting, The Campaign Legal Center
- Joseph “Jazz” Hayden, plaintiff, Hayden v. Pataki
- Dale Ho, Director of Voting Rights Project, ACLU
- Daniel Jenkins, democracy activist, plaintiff, Longway v. Jefferson
- Eric Lotke, attorney, researcher and author
- Bruce Reilly, Formerly Incarcerated, Convicted People and Families Movement
- Brigette Sarabi, Partnership for Safety and Justice
- Jason Stanley, Professor of Philosophy, Yale University
- Heather Ann Thompson, Professor of History, University of Michigan
- Janice Thompson, Midwest Democracy Network
- Angela Wessels
- Brenda Wright, Demos: A Network for Ideas and Action
- Rebecca Young, Attorney
*Organizations for identification purposes only.