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03/27/2017

Governor and Mrs. Malloy to Host ‘Reimagining Justice’ Conference on Criminal Justice Reform on June 14 and 15 in Hartford

Former Senior Advisor to the President of the United States Valerie Jarrett to Serve as Keynote Speaker

(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Dannel P. Malloy and First Lady Cathy Malloy today announced they will convene a conference in Hartford this summer with criminal justice experts, leaders, and advocates from throughout the country to discuss the progress being made to reform criminal justice systems in the ongoing effort to reduce crime and end the cycle of mass incarceration. Former Senior Advisor to the President of the United States Valerie Jarrett will serve as the event’s keynote speaker, among other notable guest speakers to be announced over the next several weeks.

Organized by the Office of Governor Malloy, the “Reimagining Justice” conference will be held on June 14 and 15, 2017 at the Hartford Marriott Downtown and will feature a diverse group of participants, including formerly incarcerated individuals, victims of crime, academics, business leaders, members of faith communities, and representatives of labor.

“Criminal justice is evolving, and Connecticut is among several states at the forefront of implementing cutting-edge strategies,” Governor Malloy said. “If we want to tackle the cycle of crime and poverty, and if we want to continue to drive crime down even lower, then we must change our approach to criminal justice with long-term solutions. We cannot take a one-size-fits-all attitude to corrections and expect further gains. If we are to truly be about corrections, and if we are to truly work towards ensuring that those housed in our prisons never return, then we need to be a society that invests in permanent improvement and reformation instead of permanent punishment.”

“Across our country, states led by both Democratic and Republican elected officials are coming to realize that being tough on crime means being smart on crime,” Mrs. Malloy said. “The criminal justice policies that we implement have a real-life impact on our ability to reduce crime within our communities, in addition to the ability of people who may have committed a nonviolent offence to become productive members of our community and are not guided into lives of crime. This conference will give thought leaders from across the country an opportunity to discuss reforms that are working and strategies to achieve our ultimate goal – reduce crime and end the cycle of mass incarceration.”

Conference speakers and panels will focus their conversations primarily on the following topics:

  • Juvenile and Young Adult Offenders: Updated science about the brain development of individuals up to the age of 25 indicates that there are important developmental differences between juveniles, young adults, and adults. Participants will discuss these new discoveries, and how our justice system should adapt to accommodate for them.
  • Pretrial Justice: Experience has shown that spending even a small number of days behind bars pretrial can have a detrimental effect on a person. The conference will examine bail reform efforts around the country that end the jailing of individuals who are simply too poor to afford bail.
  • Incarceration: Changes are being made in prisons around the country, and the world, to better recognize the human dignity of their inhabitants. Participants will analyze these alternate systems of incarceration and identify best practices to be replicated.
  • Re-entry: Job training programs, education, housing, and employment opportunities are all important pieces of a successful re-entry plan. The conference will call upon the experience of ex-offenders, non-profit organizations, and the businesses community to develop strategies for the successful re-entry of all incarcerated persons.


The two-day conference is designed for attendees from a wide range of disciplines and is open to anyone interested in reforming the criminal justice system in order to drive crime down even lower and make our communities safer, remove the one-size-fits-all attitude toward corrections, end the trend of mass incarceration, tackle the cycle of crime and poverty, and ensure that those who are housed within our prisons never return.

In addition to keynote speaker Valerie Jarrett, many well-known criminal justice experts will also be presenting at the conference. Some of the other notable panelists and speakers include:

  • Kimberly M. Foxx – Ms. Foxx is the State’s Attorney representing Cook County in Illinois, which encompasses the City of Chicago. She is the first African American woman to lead this office, which is the second largest prosecutor’s office in the county, and was elected to the top prosecutor post after claiming victory in a historic election during a critical time for the criminal justice system in Chicago.
  • Mark Holden – Mr. Holden serves as Senior Vice President, General Counsel, and Corporate Secretary of Koch Industries, Inc. He is also President and COO of the Legal Division of Koch Companies Public Sector, LLC, which provides legal, government, and public affairs services to Koch Industries, Inc. and its affiliates. In addition, he also serves as Chairman of the Board of Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce, Inc. and serves on the Board of Directors of Americans For Prosperity.
  • Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman – The Honorable Jonathan Lippmann was the Chief Judge of New York and Chief Judge of the New York Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court, having been appointed by Governor David Paterson, and served in that position until his retirement in 2015. Today, he serves as council in the New York office of Latham & Watkins and is a member of the firm’s Litigation & Trial Department.
  • Chief Justice Scott Bales – The Honorable Scott Bales is the Chief Justice of the Arizona Supreme Court, having been appointed to the court in 2005 by Governor Janet Napolitano and elected as its Chief Justice in 2014.
  • Chief Justice Stuart Rabner – The Honorable Stuart Rabner is the Chief Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court, having been appointed to the court in 2007 by Governor Jon S. Corzine and nominated for tenure by Governor Chris Christie in 2014.


A full program schedule and complete list of all presenters will be announced in the coming weeks.

Between 2009 to 2017, Ms. Jarrett served as Senior Advisor to President Barack Obama, overseeing the White House Offices of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs, and chairing the White House Council on Women and Girls. She worked throughout her tenure at the White House to mobilize elected officials, business and community leaders, and diverse groups of advocates behind efforts to strengthen and improve access to the middle class, to boost American businesses and our economy, and to champion equality and opportunity for all Americans. From ongoing campaigns to end sexual assault, raise the minimum wage, advocate workplace policies that empower working families, and promote entrepreneurship and early childhood education, Ms. Jarrett has helped the President develop a broad coalition of partners to execute a robust agenda.

Registration to attend the conference will soon be made available online at portal.ct.gov/ReimaginingJustice. Conference fees will include admission and lunch for both days of the conference. Special discount rates on hotel rooms at the Hartford Marriott Downtown will be made available to attendees and can be reserved through visiting the conference website.

Exhibit space is available for organizations who would like to support the mission of this conference. Anyone interested in being a featured exhibitor or sponsor of the event should contact Monika Nugent at Monika.Nugent@ct.gov or 860-524-7318 as soon as possible.

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