Solutions to Post-Incarceration Employment and Entrepreneurship: The Role of Businesses and Universities

Friday, April 22, 2016
8:00 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

What can businesses and universities do to promote the successful reentry of people returning home from prisons and jails? There is an increasing awareness that successful reentry improves the social, economic, and moral well-being of our society. Central to this awareness is an acknowledgment that effective education, employment, and entrepreneurial opportunities allow formerly incarcerated people both to advance themselves and our nation. However, a focus on the critical roles played by businesses and universities is often absent from discussions about solutions.

This forum—a joint effort by the Tamer Center for Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School and the Columbia University Center for Justice — is an unprecedented undertaking to address these critical issues. We will convene scholars, policy-makers, nonprofits, business leaders, and people directly affected by incarceration to better understand key ways that businesses and universities can bolster successful reentry.

Executive directors who would like to attend future forums can contact [email protected].


8:00–8:30 a.m.

Breakfast and Registration

8:30–8:45 a.m.

Welcome and Introductions

  • Lee C. Bollinger
    Seth Low Professor
    Columbia University
  • Damon Phillips
    Lambert Family Professor of Social Enterprise
    Co-director, Tamer Center for Social Enterprise
    Columbia Business School
8:45–9:45 a.m.

Keynote Speaker

9:45–10:45 a.m.

Academic Insights

  • Ifeoma Ajunwa (moderator)
    Assistant Professor of Law, University of the District of Columbia
    Ph.D. Candidate, Columbia University
  • Greg Fairchild PhD '02 (view presentation)
    E. Thayer Bigelow Associate Professor of Business Administration;
    Institute for Business in Society Academic Director
    Darden School of Business, University of Virginia
  • Devah Pager (view presentation)
    Professor of Sociology and Public Policy
    Harvard University;
    Susan S. and Kenneth L. Wallach Professor
    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study
  • Michael Stoll (view presentation)
    Professor of Public Policy and Urban Planning
    Associate Director of the Center for the Study of Urban Poverty
    UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs
  • José Zubizarreta (view presentation)
    Assistant Professor, Decision, Risk and Operations
    Columbia Business School;
    Affiliated Faculty with Department of Statistics
    Columbia University
10:45–11:15 a.m.

Coffee Break

11:15 a.m.–12:15 p.m.

Keynote Speaker

12:15–1:45 p.m.

Working Lunch: Round table Discussions

  • "SME Approaches to Hiring"
    Moderated by Joel Hommes, Wash Cycle Laundry
  • "Nonprofits as Employment Facilitators"
    Moderated by Rich Robbins '01, Upper West Strategies
  • "Large Business Approaches to Hiring"
    Moderated by Christine Chan, XPO Logistics
1:45–2:45 p.m.

Business Insights

2:45–3:45 p.m.

Community and Government Insights

  • Geraldine Downey (moderator)
    Professor of Psychology
    Director, the Center for Justice
    Columbia University
  • Ronald Day
    Associate Vice President
    Fortune Society
  • Paul Keefe
    Supervising Attorney
    New York City Commission on Human Rights
  • Victoria Sharp, MD
    Former Director, The Spencer Cox Center for Health
    St. Luke's Roosevelt Hospital
3:45–4:00 p.m.

 Afternoon Break

4:00–4:30 p.m.

Putting the Pieces Together

  • Pamela Valera
    Assistant Professor, Sociomedical Sciences
    Columbia University Medical Center
4:30–4:45 p.m.

Closing Remarks

  • Geraldine Downey
    Professor of Psychology
    Director, the Center for Justice
    Columbia University

References and Links Provided by Speakers

Ifeoma Ajunwa

Lynn Allen

Gregory Fairchild

Devah Pager

Michael Stoll

Jeremy Travis

Curated Articles from the Marshall Project (editor-in-chief, Bill Keller)

Other References