Mary King served as Executive Director of the Michigan Center for Youth Justice (MCYJ) from January 1, 2016 through December 31, 2020. She began working with people in prison as an intern at Huron Valley Women’s Correctional Facility in the early 80’s. In 1988 Mary created the Women’s Program at Option’s Center, for women with a felony conviction, and went on to become the first Coordinator for the Children’s Visitation Program, which brought children from all over Michigan for structured visits with their incarcerated mothers. This was also Mary’s first experience working with MCYJ and the indomitable Beth Arnovits, who Mary still refers to as “her favorite boss.” In 2006, Mary began working as Community Coordinator for the Michigan Prisoner ReEntry Initiative (MPRI) in Washtenaw and Livingston Counties, where for eight years she engaged key stakeholders in a unified effort to provide evidence-based services for returning citizens. Today, Mary continues to support the work of MCYJ by providing project-based support for the organization, which includes facilitation and technical assistance with MI-CEMI.
Since 1989, Kay Perry has served as Executive Director of the Michigan Chapter of Citizens United for the Rehabilitation of Errants (MI-CURE), a statewide grassroots criminal justice reform organization. She also served as Chair of National CURE from 1997 to 2009. Beginning in 2000, she coordinated the ETC (Equitable Telephone Charges) Campaign on behalf of National CURE. That campaign was an effort to reduce the high cost of prison telephone calls nationwide. She is the facilitator for a small group of Kalamazoo residents (the Forget-You-Nots) who meet monthly to write to people from Kalamazoo who are in high-level Michigan prisons and are experiencing some degree of isolation. A graduate of Western Michigan University, she has had careers in business data processing and technical writing.
Lois Pullano is the Executive Director and Founder of Citizens for Prison Reform (CPR), a statewide family-led nonprofit founded in 2011. CPR assists and supports families with incarcerated loved ones. A Family Advisory Board was established in 2015 that meets with MDOC Administration to work on strengthening family support and humane treatment. Recently CPR began the Open MI Door Campaign to end the use of solitary confinement in Michigan prisons, jails and juvenile detention facilities.
Algeria Wilson, MSW serves as the Director of Public Policy for the National Association of Social Workers, Michigan Chapter. In her role she is responsible for engaging membership, various governmental agencies, and advocacy partners to implement state level public policy that is in alignment with the Code of Ethics and social work values on behalf of the 28,000+ professional social workers and 6,500 incoming professionals across the state. Previously, Algeria interned for a Michigan social work state representative. Her work included a range of responsibilities from scheduling, drafting resolutions on behalf of the representative, attending community meetings, town halls and focusing on senior affordable housing issues in the district. Algeria is certified by the University of Connecticut’s Nancy M. Humphries Campaign School for Political Social Workers – which teaches social workers to run compelling campaigns and has received the Cenie Jomo Award, from the National Association of Black Social Workers for her commitment to policy work.
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