9th Annual Transformative Justice and Abolition Criminology Conference via Zoom February 10, 2023

9th Annual Transformative Justice and Abolition Criminology Conference
February 10, 2023

9:00am to 5:10pm (Western Time USA)
10:00am to 6:10pm (Mountain Time USA)
11:00am to 7:10pm (Central Time USA)
12:00pm to 8:10pm (Eastern Time USA)

Public, Free, Recorded, and via Zoom

Register Here:

Conferences Co-Chairs:
Lucas Dietsche

Dr. Anthony J. Nocella II
315-657-2911 cellphone


Transformative Justice
Critical disability studies
Healing Justice
Prison Abolition
Cultural and Religious intersectionalities
Language Terminology
Policy and/or/versus Culture Social Change
Social and Cultural Construction of Disabilities
Fighting Political and Corporate Repression
Being a Scholar-Activist
Decolonizing Movements and Education
Hip Hop Pedagogy, Activism, and Studies
Rhetoric of Health and Wellness
Social Attitudes of Neuroatypicality
Total Liberation
Racial Justice
Economic Justice
Social Justice
Youth Justice
Critical Eco-Feminism
Community Justice and Circles
Direct Democracy
Critical Criminology
Community Organizing
Anarchist Criminology
Radical Criminology
Peace Studies and Making
Conflict Transformation and Resolution

All Speakers have 20 minutes to present with 10 minutes of questions and comments.

All submissions for the conference need to be in a Word Doc. as an attachment in an E-mail with the following information:
1. Title of Presentation
2. Biography third person 80 to 100 words one paragraph
3. Description/Abstract of the presentation around 200 words third person and one paragraph


Lucas Dietsche

Deadline is: January 24,2023

(Based on USA Mountain Time)
10:00am – 6:10pm

10:00am – 10:10am – Welcoming and Introduction
Lucas Alan Dietsche

Biography: Lucas Alan  Dietsche is a National Director of Transformative Justice and  member of the Division of Convict Criminology.  He has a Masters in CJ and Criminology  researching Poetic Inquiry, zines, taphology,  carceral feminism, and Marxist feminist abolition.  Currently living in Minnesota, he is the Prisoner Liaison Editor  of Transformative Justice Journal.  He was Superior, WI’s first Co-Poet Laureate. His poetry and novella published works include“Word Out: Poems Written Under the Big Top of Dodge and Stanley Correctional Facilities”, “Commies and Zombies”, “Since the Oregon Trail”,“Moods are Like Wisconsin Weather”,”Elba Memoirs of an Ex-Capitalist”, and  “Kapshida.” and “for god’s throw away children”. He has published poetry in Transformative Justice Journal, Ariel Anthology,  and his blog  “Pilot of Oumuamua.  

10:10am – 10:30am – Dyslexia Leading to the School-to-Prison Pipeline
Kristina Hodgdon

Biography: Kristina Hodgdon is the founder of a nonprofit for reentry citizens called the STEAM Cafe in Naples, Florida. She is originally from Maine but moved to Florida 20 years ago with her husband Jim. Together they have an 18-year-old son, Lucas who is a freshman at USF. Kristina’s educational back is in psychology, paralegal studies, and data analytics. Kristina is disabled from a major stroke in 2015 and has a passionate belief in equality and second chances for marginalized people and giving back to the community.

Abstract: Dyslexia is an invisible learning disability that is a root cause of the School to Prison Pipeline (SPP). It disproportionately affects black children and has consequences that can last a lifetime. The social and emotional consequences for children with dyslexia can create a host of issues that lead to behavioral problems due to shame and avoidance. Children with dyslexia often skip classes when facing adverse experiences with reading, comprehension, and math exams or presentations. They experience higher rates of detention, suspension, and expulsion which leads to frequenting the streets, selling drugs then leads to juvenile arrest and eventually to prison. Other factors that fuel the SPP for black children are zero-tolerance policies, curfews, and media. A large percentage of incarcerated people have either diagnosed or undiagnosed dyslexia. There is a need for early detection and evidence-based treatment to prevent the path from school to prison. Awareness and learning focused programs can help dismantle the SPP. This article explores a framework called Quantum Ten that integrates theories to enhance educational equity.  Equity that will benefit both children and incarcerated individuals with dyslexia. It also explores using the same framework for a prison to school pipeline in a reentry nonprofit learning center called STEAM Cafe.

10:30am – 10:40am Q and A

10:40am – 12:00am – Book Talk: Round Table on Ludic Ubuntu Ethics: Decolonizing Justice

1. Lucien Lombardo, Old Dominion University

Biography: Lucien X. Lombardo, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Sociology and Criminal Justice at Old Dominion University from 1977 until he retired in 2015.Though he retired, he still teaches on-line courses: “Understanding Violence” and “Violence in the World of Children” every year. He is also on the board of Champions for Children / Prevent Child Abuse Hampton Roads (in Virginia) and the Harriet Tubman Center for Justice and Peace, in Auburn, NY. He also serves on the national No Hit Zone committee, the Global Education Team of  Human Dignity and Humiliation Studies group and the Public Policy and Engagement Action Team of the NAtional Partnership to End Interpersonal Violence. He received his doctorate from the School of Criminal Justice, SUNY, Albany in 1978. He also earned a M.A. in Criminal Justice in 1974, a M.A. in Latin American Studies from the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 1969 and a B.A. in Spanish Linguistics from the University of Rochester in 1967. Dr. Lombardo started his teaching career as a teacher in the Osborne School at Auburn Correctional Facility from 1969-1977 where he taught 5th and 8th grade Englishand high school Spanish to students who lived in the maximum-security prison. Auburn Correctional Facility is the oldest continuously operating prison in the United States, having open its gates to let prisoners in in 1816. Dr. Lombardo taught courses that are part of the Sociology and Criminal Justice undergraduate and graduate programs, the Work and Professional Studies BS degree program and The Children’s Rights Interdisciplinary Minor. Dr. Lombardo also served as Coordinator of the upper level general education Cluster program, The Work and Professional Studies BS program and the Center for the Study of Work. Dr. Lombardo is a leader in general education and interdisciplinary curriculum development efforts during his time at Old Dominion University. 

2. Dr. Margaret McLaren, Rollins College

Biography: Margaret A. McLaren holds the George D. and Harriet W. Cornell Chair of Philosophy at Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida where she teaches Philosophy and in the program of Sexuality, Gender, and Women’s Studies (SWAG). She received her M.A. and Ph. D. in philosophy from Northwestern University. She is the author of Feminism, Foucault, and Embodied Subjectivity (2002, State University of New York Press). Her articles on gender issues, women and human rights, multiculturalism, Foucault, feminism, and virtue ethics have appeared in several journals, including Social Theory and Practice, Journal of Developing Societies, Forum on Public Policy, Philosophy Today, and Hypatia, and book anthologies including, Feminism and the Final Foucault, Feminists Doing Ethics, and Florida Without Borders: Women at the Intersections of the Local and Global.

3. Dr. Joshua Price, Toronto Metropolitan University

Biography: Joshua Price engages in ethnographic and participatory research on structural and institutional violence, race and gender violence, incarceration and life after incarceration. Josh also studies the role translation practices have played in the colonization of the Americas. He is the author or coeditor of four books, including Prison and Social Death (Rutgers UP 2015) and he has co-translated two books of Latin American philosophy. His next book,Translation and Epistemicide: Racialization of Language in the Americas. will be released in January 2023. Josh has held fellowships at the James Weldon Johnson Institute for Advanced Interdisciplinary Study at Emory University; Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice at St. Thomas University (NB); the Ibero-Amerikanisches Institut (Berlin); and he has served as a Fulbright Senior Specialist at University of Antioquia (Medellín, Colombia).

4. Patrick Brown, Director of the Restorative Justice Initiative

Biography: Patrick Brown (he/they) is a strategist, advocate, coach, and facilitator focused on organizational transformation. Through a national network of partnerships, he has created a body of work that includes executive coaching, transformative leadership development, systems change strategy mapping, and more. Patrick’s approach is full-hearted and joyful rooted in healing through rigorous individual work. As a queer Black man moving through the world he often draws from his own experiences influenced by teachings of the Buddha and Dharma, Black Feminist Theory, Somatic experience, and ancient wisdom philosophies. Patrick was born into a lineage of union and faith-based organizers on the south side of Chicago. His background in workforce development focused on creating opportunities for marginalized communities including women in non-traditional sectors, formerly incarcerated, poor, and communities of color. He left that work for Oakland to better understand the process of transformation. Since arriving in 2011, Patrick has had the fortune to work with powerful partners to create change. They include but are not limited to: the California Congressional Black Caucus, PolicyLink, Museum of African Diaspora, Whole Foods, The United Way Worldwide, Spirit Rock Meditation Center, Leadership Learning Community, People’s Institute for Undoing Racism, The Greenlining Institute, East Side Arts Alliance, The California Endowment, Urban Habitat, Othering and Belonging conference and more. Patrick currently leads work with The Justice Collective that deepens and expands racial equity through leadership and organizational development. With a deep commitment to mindfulness and embodiment practices, he believes we can change the world by transforming ourselves.

5. Dr. Mecke Nagel, SUNY Cortland

Biography: Dr. Mechthild Nagel is professor of philosophy & Africana Studies and Director of the Center for Ethics, Peace, and Social Justice at the State University of New York, College at Cortland, USA. Dr. Nagel is also a visiting professor at Fulda University, Germany and Pompeu Fabra University, Barcelona, Spain. She is author of eight books including three on penal abolition. She writes on ethics of play, critical justice studies, global feminist studies, Africana philosophy. Dr. Nagel is founder and editor-in-chief of the online feminist journal Wagadu: A Journal of Transnational Women’s and Gender Studies (wagadu.org). She has taught in area prisons in New York state and established a prison education program at a prison in Fulda, Germany. Lately, Dr. Nagel also supervises a college program (Sophia’s Garden project), teaching philosophy to children and is co-founder and coordinator of a social justice organization United Voices of Cortland.

Abstract: The round brings together scholars of criminology, philosophy and law to discuss Mecke Nagel’s monograph Ludic Ubuntu Ethics  which highlights African and Indigenous justice practices and proposes new relational justice models. ‘Ubuntu’ signifies shared humanity, presenting us a sociocentric perspective of life that is immensely helpful in rethinking the relation of offender and victim. In this book, Mecke Nagel introduces a new theoretical liberation model—ludic Ubuntu ethics—to showcase five different justice conceptions through a psychosocial lens, allowing for a contrasting analysis of negative Ubuntu (e.g., through shaming and separation) towards positive Ubuntu (e.g., mediation, healing circles, and practices that no longer rely on punishment). Providing a novel perspective on penal abolitionism, the volume draws on precolonial (pre-carceral) Indigenous justice perspectives and Black feminism, using discourse analysis and a constructivist approach to justice theory. Nagel also introduces readers to a post secular turn by taking seriously the spiritual dimensions of healing from harm and highlighting the community’s response.

12:00pm – 12:10pm Q and A

12:10pm – 12:30pm – Using Trans Liberation in Prison Abolition Framework
AJ Reed

Biography: AJ Reed (they/them) is an organizer-scholar who scrutinizes official stations of power (e.g., institutions and the state) as they utilize their governance and align the economy that affects marginalized working-class communities and how forms of resistance can generate counter-power against official stations of power. Through their 20 years as an organizer and political strategist, they have employed leftist praxis when standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the voiceless, marginalized, and oppressed communities who inhabit spaces of injustice.

Abstract: Members of the transgender community are routinely targeted for violence and abuse because of their gender identity or presentation. The frequency of this violence is by law enforcement that harasses and profiles transgender people of color. Another layer of this violence is the policies linked to the transgender community, whether it is condom laws that serve as evidence of prostitution, the current legislation that condemns drag shows that are in place in several states in 2023, or outright shooting trans folx. Over the decades, the state has given the green light to its apparatus of the prison industrial complex to contain members of the transgender community, particularly trans of color. This presentation will offer information on the current state of how the prison industrial complex assault the transgender community and what trans liberation look like within a prison abolition framework.

12:30pm – 12:40pm Q and A

12:40pm – 1:00pm – Disrupting Data As the Great Social Equalizer
Lauralea Edwards

Biography: Dr. Lauralea Edwards is a systems-oriented data strategist committed to integrating business and technology to make higher education affordable, accessible, and sustainable. Dr. Edwards has led system-wide initiatives building data-informed processes to measure effectiveness in achieving strategic goals. She has received public recognition for securing personnel resources in austere environments as well as for innovation in leveraging technology to improve business processes and reduce costs. She holds a BS in Behavioral Science from Andrews University, a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University, and a Ph.D. in Cultural Studies and Social Thought in Education at Washington State University. Dr. Edwards is currently the Assistant Vice President for Institutional Effectiveness at the State University of New York at Delhi.

Abstract: Data is heralded as the great equalizer of social inequities. This presentation investigates the validity of this claim by presenting a mixed-methods study investigating how power dynamics are embedded within the scholarship application of a two-year college in the United States. It researches what might happen if scholarship determination processes are completed by machine learning and how that might impact students from under-represented communities.

1:00pm – 1:10pm Q and A

1:10pm – 1:30pm – Media and Moral Panic:  How Media Represents Black and Brown Youth from the Post-Reconstruction Era to Today
Courtney Montoya, and Dr. Megan Ross


Courtney Montoya from Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee media committee and  Millions for Prisoners/IWOC New Mexico, Diana Crowson from Millions for Prisoners New Mexico/IWOC, The Free Spook Movement and the ACLU Justice Advisory Board.

Dr. Megan Ross from Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee Atlanta and Postdoctoral Fellow at Emory University.  

Abstract: How does the media not just report the news, but actively generate narratives that support institutions in power? What role does the media have in the creation and perpetuation of moral panics and racist stereotypes? How do we resist? This presentation examines the media systemically and through time, as an institution that has developed into a key tool in the perpetuation of racist stereotypes to justify police violence.  On  July 6th  2022 a joint task force attempting to serve a warrant on a 27 year old man lit a Black family’s home on fire using gas canisters and powder based chemicals . A Black 15 year old child named Brett Rosenau was killed by smoke inhalation .   Brett’s father was also shot and killed in 2006 by a Bernallillo County Sheriff’s deputy  who was also at the scene of the fire. In the aftermath, the police attempted to criminalize Brett at every opportunity , allowing the police to shape the narrative. Countering the media and police in this matter is a constant struggle but we must do everything in our power to combat police violence and the media that fuels the moral panic. 

1:30pm- 1:40 pm Q and A

1:40pm – 2:00pm – Coming to America, Running from the Americans: Dictators, Death Squads, Detention and Deportations
Laura Schleifer

Biography: Laura Schleifer is the Institute for Critical Animal Studies Director of Regions and Total Liberation, Program Director at Promoting Enduring Peace, Vision Council member of the UK-based Plant-Based Health Justice, and co-founder of Plant the Land, a Gaza-based vegan food justice/community projects team. A lifelong “artivist” and graduate of NYU Tisch School of the Arts, she’s performed throughout the Middle East with a circus troupe, taught in China, Nicaragua, and at Wesleyan University’s Green Street Arts Center, performed off-Broadway, and arts-mentored homeless youth. Her screenplay, The Feral Child, was a Sundance Screenwriters’ Lab finalist. Her essays appear in New Politics Magazine , The Leftist Review, Project Intersect, Forca Vegan, The New Engagement, Kropotkin Now! Life, Freedom and Ethics (Black Rose Books, 2023), Neoliberal Schooling of Selfishness and Exploitation: Rubricization and Corporatization of Higher Education, (Peter Lang, 2022) and Fever Spores; William S. Burroughs and Queer Letters, (Rebel Satori Press, 2022).

Abstract: While U.S. detention centers along the Mexican border provoked outcry during the Trump era, more recently, they have again receded into the shadows. Additionally, most US citizens perceive undocumented immigrants to be leaving their homelands in order to seek a better life in the U.S., or to escape internal conflicts. Largely unknown is that for many of these refugees, U.S. Foreign policy itself is responsible for the forces driving them to flee. The School of the Americas/Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation(SOA/WHINSEC), a CIA-operated training facility in Ft. Benning, GA, exists for the express purpose of undermining democracy and crushing human rights struggles in Latin America on behalf of US corporations, yet the vast majority of U.S. citizens are unaware of its existence. Connecting the dots between the detention centers at the border and labor exploitation, environmental justice, trade deregulation, dictatorships, death squads, drug gangs, terrorism, human trafficking, and indigenous resistance movements, this presentation will reveal how the detention centers are part of a much bigger US Capitalist-imperialist assault against all life on earth.

2:00pm – 2:10pm – Q and A

2:10pm – 2:30pm – A Recipe for Practical Abolition in MN
David Boehnke

Biography: David Boehnke is the Campaigns Coordinator for the Twin Cities Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC), a grassroots group inside and out of Minnesota state prisons. Over the last 4 years, IWOC has safely shrunk Minnesota’s prison population by 10% through two major campaigns, won a half dozen mini-campaigns, and supported incarcerated people winning hundreds of grievances. A half time high school teacher in Minneapolis, David dreams of climate families, an end to mass incarceration, and a free world.

Abstract: Most people in prison, impacted communities, and in the United States don’t believe in prison abolition. Yet they all have a direct stake in it, something they can see if their interest can be aligned with a practical vision for making it so. In this presentation David Boehnke, a long time prison organizer and abolitionist will lay out a draft recipe for practical abolition, focusing on the key stakeholders, realignments, organizing, and legislation needed to do so in Minnesota. He hopes this will be useful to people doing work in other states and a time for mutual learning and refining our visions for a collective future.

2:30pm – 2:40pm – Q and A

2:40pm – 3:00pm – BIPOC in the School to Prison Pipeline
Chelsie Joy Acosta

Biography: Chelsie Joy Acosta is a proud Latina educator in Salt Lake City, Utah. She currently serves as an ACLU National Board Member and the ACLU of Utah’s Equity Officer. Chelsie also serves on the Utah NAME Board and for the National Association for Multicultural Education. Chelsie serves locally and nationally within the National Education Association currently as a member of the NEA SOGI (Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity) Committee, NEA Co-Conspirator Steering Committee and recently as the NEA Hispanic Secretary and the NEA EMAC (Ethnic Minority Affairs Committee). In 2017, she was a finalist for the NEA Social Justice Activist Educator of the Year. She also served as the coordinator for the Save the Kids National Week Against School Pushout and the National Week of Action Against Incarcerating Youth. Chelsie is currently a graduate student at the University of Utah in the Department of Education, Culture and Society. Her activism is centered, but not limited to; racial justice, the School to Prison Pipeline, Restorative Justice and the intersectionality of LGBTQIA+ within racial and social justice. 

Abstract: Black, indigenous, youth of color (BIYOC) are segregated every day across these sovereign lands. From the moment they are “booked” as a registered student and their personal information is collected by the white registrar behind the window, they become a number. Uniforms are handed out along with discipline manuals written in English, stripping them of their identity, language, and culture. Excitement for the new school year vanishes with the claustrophobic images of the American flag and introductions to the SRO (school resource officer) keeping watch over the glass enclosed space. Nothing sounds like, smells like, or feels like the safety of “home.” The similarity to a prison is alarming, and yet, the mass influx of BIYOC funneled into the prison industrial complex of mass incarceration doesn’t seem to interrupt or disturb the status quo of whiteness

3:00pm – 3:10pm – Q and A

3:10pm – 3:30pm – Intersectionality
Rae Duckworth

Biography: Rae Duckworth is the current Operating Chairperson for Black Lives Matter Utah Chapter and a
Board Member for the Utah Black History Museum Bus. We continue to stand in solidarity with families and victims of police brutality, as the police are not our friends. Bobby Ray Duckworth is a cousin to Ms. Duckworth, who was murdered by police while experiencing a mental health crisis on World Suicide Prevention Day, Sept 10th, 2019. This tragedy has increased awareness and participation, politically and within the community, in decolonizing and accepting mental health practices and conversations. We host a yearly Kids Camp at the end of summer to aid the self-empowerment of Black and Brown youth in Utah. With a Utah-lived experience, growing up as a Black Queer Womxn, and parent, it is important to partake in actions to preserve Black stories, amplify intersectionality, solidify awareness and create safe spaces for the youth to learn, teach, and grow in. We continuously work with community members and organizations to obtain every structure of police reform for our city’s capital and our state. This includes participating in legislation, lobbying, registering community members to vote, and sharing current knowledge and voter rights with our boots on the ground.

Abstract: The importance of identifying and understanding intersectionality while operating from marginalized spaces. Additionally, reminding the Self we were not thought of in the design of the system allows us to benefit from intersectionality as a whole.

3:30pm – 3:40pm Q and A

3:40pm – 4:00pm – From Bars to Beats: Capturing the Voices of Los Angeles’ Incarcerated Youth
Luke Reynolds AKA Morrison Machiavelli

Biography: Morrison Machiavelli provides mentorship as a Hip Hop artist, songwriter, and teaching artist. Actively mentoring artists, primarily youth, he works to bridge the gap within Hip Hop culture empowering transformative expression and fulfillment. Working with Jail Guitar Doors serving incarcerated and at-risk youth he works inside of Juvenile Detention Centers, in Los Angeles. Also working diligently as Facility Manager at the Community Arts Programming and Outreach Center, Morrison works to combat recidivism and help others separate from the cradle to prison pipeline. As a Zulu Union member and co-chapter leader of the Calafia Zulu Chapter Morrison works to serve his community.

Abstract: Morrison will be talking about the climate of the juvenile justice system in Los Angeles and the implementation of restorative justice. Exploring the challenges faces with CBOs, mental health professionals and probation. Morrison will do a deep dive reflection from working over 6,000 hours with over 500 incarcerated and formerly incarcerated youth over the last four years. We will discuss how we can shift our efforts for more focused results by challenging the current system established by probation. Focusing on areas that may be hindering development and growth as well as underlining unresolved measures which must be addressed within evolution of the system. Examples such as generational involvement in gangs and the family structure that offers, and the complex nature of necessities in many at-risk communities not being met. Discussing ways in which how we move forward together empowering our youth to be the change we need in our communities.

4:00pm – 4:10pm Q and A

4:10pm – 4:30pm – How to Abolish the Prison Industrial Complex
Andy Hope Williams Jr.

Biography: Andy Hope Williams Jr. is an abolitionist, advocate, and statesman.  He evolved into a peacemaker from being a former gang leader and formerly enslaved man.  Mr. Williams, a 2020 Presidential Candidate and co-founder of the Democratic-Republic Party. The mission of the party is to abolish slavery in all forms, eradicate poverty, and end all wars. The DRP implements its mission by utilizing litigation under section 2 of the 13th Amendment. Mr. Williams is on a national campaign to Restore America through a Restorative Justice approach and end incarceration for victimless crimes. Currently, he is the leading Plaintiff against United States and 32 States to end the exception clause in the 13th Amendment. In addition, he has pending litigation against his home city, Aurora, Illinois that declares the police evolved from slave patrols and the gang database is unconstitutional and must be abolished.

Abstract: His belief in abolition is first and foremost historical. It grew from reading about the era of Fredrick Douglas as well as firsthand experience in the prison system, to truly understanding why mass incarceration primarily exists: profit. Prison Abolitionist seeks to reduce or eliminate prisons and the prison system, and replace them with systems of rehabilitation that do not place a focus on punishment and government institutionalization. Abolitionist are not looking to improve conditions inside the prison, they seek to abolish the prison altogether. Modern day prisons can be traced back to slavery and the capitalist regime it relied on and sustained. The expanding prison industrial complex functions to oppress people and other politically marginalized groups in order to maintain a profit. Remove the profit means a reduction in mass incarceration which leads to abolishing the prisons.

4:30pm – 4:40pm Q and A

4:40pm – 5:00pm – Lessons from Prison and Prisoners
Michael Novick

Biography: Michael Novick has edited “Turning The Tide” (https://antiracist.org) since 1988. He recently co-authored “The Blue Agave Revolution: Poetry of the Blind Rebel” with Indigenous political prisoner Oso Blanco and has a chapter in “No Pasaran! Antifascist Dispatches from a World in Crisis.” He’s interviewed in “We Go Where They Go – The Story of Anti-Racist Action,” and “No Fascist USA!” about the John Brown Anti-Klan Committee. (Michael was a co-founder of both JBAKC and the ARA Network.) As manager of Pacifica’s KPFK in L.A., he’s brought on programs from Stop LAPD Spying, Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, La Raza Radio, and other anti-racist voices such as “Think Outside the Cage.”

Abstract: Michael will discuss the importance of the struggle to free political prisoners to abolitionism, and the lessons from prisoners for anti-racist, anti-sexist, and anti-fascist struggle.

5:00pm – 5:10pm Q and A

5:10pm to 5:30pm -JUSTICE and JURISDICTION: International Law & the Case of the Hawaiian Kingdom
Kinikini Lani Lea

Dr. Lea Lani Kinikini (she/her/ia) is a critical cultural researcher whose learning interests include family migration, diaspora (especially Oceanic and Pacific Islander), popular culture and gender (including youth and masculinity), and community power relations focused on class, race and spirituality/religion. She was the first Doctor of Philosophy in Pacific Studies in the world, receiving her Doctor of Philosophy degree from the Center for Pacific Studies at the University of Auckland in New Zealand (Pacific Studies, 2010), her Master of Arts from the University of Hawaiʻi (Pacific Island Studies/International Cultural Studies, 2005) and her Bachelor of Science from the University of Utah (Anthropology, 2003). She is co-editor of the book series Liberatory Voices from Community Colleges (Peter Lang) and has recent chapters on Polynesian Lowriders in Lowrider Studies (forthcoming, Peter Lang) and Reppin’: Native Youth Justice (2021, University of Washington Press). She was the inaugural Lecturer in Pacific Worlds at the renowned Oceania Center for Arts, Culture and Pacific Studies founded by the late Professor Epeli Hauʻofa at the University of the South Pacific, Fiji (2011-2014), was visiting Co-Director of Pacific Islands Leadership Program with Taiwan at the East-West Center in Hawaiʻi (2015), and returned to the South Pacific as a Research Associate with the Institute of Education, University of the South Pacific in her fatherland of Tonga (2017-2018) before serving as Salt Lake Community College’s Chief Diversity Officer co-founding the Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Hub for Transformation from 2019-2022. Whilst in the Asia-Pacific/Oceania region she consulted with the Pacific Community (SPC/European Union Climate Change Adaptation Project 2017), OxFam New Zealand (Rural Enterprise Sustainable Living Tonga Project, 2016), and served as Advisor for Indigenous Knowledge to Intangible Cultural Heritage Asia-Pacific/UNESCO (2014). Her current praxis focuses on community research methodologies, native education and nurturing a community-engaged culture of scholarship in her current position as Director of the Institute for Research & Engaged Scholarship at the University of Hawai’i West Oʻahu, a position which allows her to continue to blend the arts of letters with the deep social impacts of action research through community engaged inter-institutional capacity building. Her current research focuses on international jurisdiction in Oceania.
This paper will focus on raising awareness of the Hawaiʻian Kingdom and its timeline of sovereignty, to highlight that the Hawaiʻian Kingdom is a nation-state in perpetuity and has never ceased to exist and is “under a strange form of occupation by the United States resulting from an illegal military occupation and a fraudulent annexation” (deZayas issuing a Memoranda from the United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner in 2018).
5:30pm to 5:40pm Q and A

5:40pm to 6:00pm – Where Are the Teachers Who Look Like Us?  The Call to Increase Diversity in HEP
Lisette Bamenga

Biography: Lisette is the Curriculum Director for the Racial Justice and Abolition Democracy project at Columbia University.  She used to teach for close to a decade in NYC schools, but after an involvement with the legal system, she found a new sense of purpose in speaking out for people who are in carceral spaces.  For this reason, Lisette joined Hudson Link for Higher Education in Prison, which provides college programming and re-entry services to people who are incarcerated in New York State.  Lisette cherishes this Nelson Mandela quote: “education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

Abstract: Instructors in higher education in prison (HEP) are predominantly white while the majority of the students they teach are Black and Latinx.  Students benefit greatly from having teachers who look like them and have had similar experiences.  Working in a women’s correctional facility, where many of the students have suffered some trauma prior to their incarceration, the process of instilling self-esteem and a sense of self-worth is just as important as the education we provide.  Having professors of color who possess advanced degrees also serves as a confirmation that education opens doors and provides the students with a perspective that inspires them to feel like they can pursue advanced degrees as well.  Therefore, as a formerly incarcerated Black woman with a Master’s degree who is pursuing an Ed D, it is important to use this experience to expose the students in the programs to volunteers who can relate to their situation.  When students feel they have a place in society, they are more likely to be civically engaged and become change agents in their community.  This presentation describes the impact of diversity on incarcerated students, and presents the strategies used to increase diversity in HEP programs.  This topic fits well with several themes of the conference such as the decolonization movement in education, racial justice, and social justice.  

6:00pm – 6:10pm Q and A