May 15

"Human Justice" with Divine Pryor

Human Justice Seminar during common time

Tuesday, May 15th, 2012
12:00 pm

Divine Pryor, who directs the Center for Nu Leadership for Urban Solutions (Nu), and Kyung Ji Kate Rhee, who directs Nu’s juvenile justice reform initiatives, will visit Carleton on 05/14/2012.

While at Carleton, Ms. Rhee and Mr. Pryor will lead a criminal justice organizing workshop, visit AFAM 113 to discuss race and criminal justice policy and practice, and meet with a select group of students enrolled in AFAM 113 and RELG 275 who, under the direction of Nu Leadership’s juvenile justice initiatives staff, are conducting engaged research on criminal justice policy and practice. Finally, Mr. Pryor will give a “common time” talk about how his time in prison solidified his commitment to learning, his religiosity, and criminal justice reform.

The Center for Nu Leadership is a New York City based independent think tank and advocacy center founded and developed by formerly incarcerated professionals working to create new paradigms for achieving social justice. Nu’s staff includes community organizers and policy advocates who seek to achieve social justice through “system reform, community empowerment and individual transformation.” Underlying the Center’s approach is the belief that confronting the convergence of mass incarceration, mass unemployment and mass disenfranchisement among African American men and women requires grassroots participation among persons most negatively affected by this convergence. 

Divine Pryor has established a national and international reputation as an expert in the field of criminal justice reform. Before receiving his undergraduate degrees and a Ph. D. in forensic psychology Dr. Pryor was incarcerated for several years. While incarcerated, Mr. Pryor discovered his love for learning, recovered his passion for justice, and developed a commitment to reverse the disproportionate number of African Americans who are imprisoned. In recent years, Dr. Pryor has served on the National Re-entry Policy Council for the Council of State Governors board of directors of the National Legal Aid and Defender Association, and the Community Justice Center.

After receiving a B.A. in philosophy at the University of Chicago, Kyung Ji Rhee began her criminal justice activism as the Director of the Prison Moratorium Project (PMP), a multi-racial group of young activists, community members and formerly incarcerated people based in New York City which worked locally and nationally to stop prison expansion and mass incarceration, and re-invest resources into communities most impacted by criminal justice policies through educational programs, alternatives-to-incarceration initiatives, housing and sustainable economic development. She joined the Prison Moratorium Project in 1999 as the organization's first full-time staff member. Since 2006, Ms. Rhee has directed Nu Leadership’s juvenile justice initiatives.

Kyung Ji has been widely recognized for her criminal justice reform work. She was featured as one of 30 Visionaries under 30 in the fall issue of the Utne Reader and one of Top 10 Artists, Albums, & Political Players of the Year! in the January 2003 issue of the Source. More recently, she has served as a Drum Major Institute fellow, a Soros fellow, and on several New York state and city juvenile justice reform taskforces and committees. 

Sponsored by Academic Civic Engagement. Contact: Henry J. Neuwirth