2019 Symposium: A National Symposium on Incarceration and Returning Citizens

  • October 7th, 2019 8:00 am
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A National Symposium on Incarceration and Returning Citizens
Presented by Reaching Out From Within

Monday, October 7
$175 per person for the full day, including Courage to Change Dinner the evening of October 7.  Register below. 

Sheraton Overland Park
6100 College Blvd, Overland Park, KS 66211

Join us for a day full of thought-provoking information and conversation.  Reaching Out From Within is thrilled to welcome Axel Briemle to Kansas City to share his knowledge and experience as one of Germany’s foremost leaders in prison rehabilitation.  The German approach to incarceration is based on rehabilitation, not punishment.  Their system varies widely from the United States approach to incarceration.

The 2019 Symposium will challenge current thinking and encourage dialogue focusing on new methods, approaches, and standards that are based on Human Dignity.

Are you interested in being part of the change to improve the system of corrections in the United States?  We need you.  Our incarcerated friends and returning citizens need you. Please join us and be part of creating a brighter future for all of us.

Register Now

Thank you for your interest in registering for the 2019 Symposium.  Registration has closed but we welcome you to make a gift in support of our mission. If you have questions about your registration, please contact info@rofw.org or 913.209.9258.

Symposium Schedule

8 am – Registration and Light Breakfast (Included in your ticket price)

8:30 am – Welcome 

8:45 am – Remarks from Axel Briemle, featured guest and internationally recognized expert in Prison Rehabilitation. 

9 am – Panel Discussion: Incarceration Based in Human Dignity
Description: Panelists are former or current heads of various prisons, one from Berlin, that all believe in incarceration based in human dignity. Each will share their experience in the implementation of alternative incarceration methods based on this foundation and the dramatic success of each program.

Axel Briemle, Internationally recognized expert in prison rehabilitation and the German prison system.

Scott Erfe, District Administrator at Connecticut Department of Corrections.  Past warden of The Rock, a Connecticut prison using a German-style program emphasizing rehabilitation for offenders.  See more here: The Rock

Moderated by Gregory Winship, Restorative Justice Strategist and Training Manager at Center for Conflict Resolution

10 am – Panel Discussion: Workforce Development: Economic Benefits from Returning Citizens
Description: Leaders in the local and national business community and reentry-specific services share the value of training and utilizing returning citizens in their company workforce, and the positive effects in their communities.  

Jenny Kim, Deputy General Counsel and Vice President at Koch Industries leading public policy, including Koch’s support of the First Step Act.

Bettie Kirkland, Executive Director at Project Return, a Nashville nonprofit agency solely dedicated to the successful new beginnings of returning citizens.

Jeff Korzenik, Chief Investment Strategist at Fifth Third Bank and passionate advocate for returning citizens finding meaningful and contributing work.

Cheryl and Randy Reinhardt, Owners of Zephyr Products, a metal fabrication company in Leavenworth Kansas and employer of currently incarcerated individuals.

Moderated by Joe Reardon, President and CEO of the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce

11 am – Returning Citizens: Who Are They?
Description: Currently incarcerated ROFW members and returned citizen ROFW alumni share their experiences of how the ROFW Program helped transform them during their incarceration, and prepared them for their eventual return into our communities.

Noon – Lunch and Networking (Included in your ticket price)

1:15 pm – Women in Prison
Description: Corrections officials, currently incarcerated women and successfully returned citizens discuss unique challenges that women face during incarceration and upon release. 

Shannon Meyer, Warden of the Lansing Correction Facility and former warden of the Topeka Women’s Correctional Facility

2 pm – Smart Justice: Alternative Approaches to Incarceration for Non-Violent Offenders
Description: With a criminal justice system in the United States that has resulted in mass incarceration and overcrowded prisons, there are many ideas to reform the system, not the least of which is a “smart justice” approach on the front end of the process. Panelists will share
their ideas on how they believe alternatives to incarceration for nonviolent offenses, probation, parole and sentencing reforms play a role in successfully reforming the criminal justice system.

Jean Peters Baker, Jackson County, MO Prosecutor

Mark Dupree, Wyandotte County District Attorney

Laquisha Ross, Assistant Federal Public Defender

Scott Schultz, Executive Director of the Kansas Sentencing Commission

Moderated by Micah Kubic, Executive Director of the ACLU of Florida

3:15 pm – State Leadership in Humane Incarceration and Re-entry

Description: State and business leaders discuss: the importance of incorporating a culture of humanity in corrections departments; the importance of ROFW-like programming to prepare incarcerated individuals for successful and lasting reentry; and, the importance of meaningful education and/or vocational training to prepare returning citizens for successful and lasting reentry.  

Mark Holden, Senior Vice President at Koch Industries

Ann Precythe, Director of the Missouri Department of Corrections

Jeff Zmuda, Acting Secretary of the Kansas Department of Corrections

Moderated by Reggie Robinson, Facilitator for the Kansas Criminal Justice Reform Commission and Vice Chancellor of Public Affairs at the University of Kansas

4:15 pm – Wrap up and closing

4:30 – Private reception for Symposium attendees

5:30 – Courage to Change Reception and Dinner 

*Times are approximate, committed speakers are noted and panels will be updated with new information as it is available.  

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Contact information for questions



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Changes and refunds to registrations may be made until September 23.  Please note, processing fees will be deducted from your refund.

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