One Day Conference on Criminal Justice Reform

The Criminal Justice Reform Initiative:

All are welcome. Join a concerned cadre of passionate individuals and professionals from major Jewish organizations, representing religious streams from Orthodox to Reform, in tackling today’s civil rights crisis.

Cosponsors (list is still in formation): UJA-Federation of New York • JCPA • JCRCNY • ADL-NY • Aleph Institute • The Bayit • B’nai Jeshurun • Congregation Beit Simchat Torah • Central Synagogue • Temple Emanu-El • Congregation Tehillah • Council of Jewish Organizers of Staten Island – COJO • Education Alliance • Hadar • Health and Human Services for All New Yorkers • The Jewish Board|Health and Human Services for All New Yorkers • JCC Harlem • Jewish Labor Committee • Jews for Racial and Economic Justice • Joseph Stern Center for Social Responsibility at Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan • Jewish Theological Seminary • Kings Bay Y/ JCC of Brooklyn • NCJW NY • NY Board of Rabbis •  Orthodox Union • Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association • Religious Action Center • Repair the World NYC • Romemu • Riverdale YM-YWHA • T’ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights • T’Shuvah • Westchester Jewish Council


One out of every three black men will spend time in the U.S. prison system. Throughout the nation and New York, ascending leaders of diverse communities are working together on reform, but the organized Jewish community is not at the table.

The Goal:

  • Raise awareness that mass incarceration is the civil rights crisis of our time. Educate with the aim of moving toward collective engagement.
  • Assemble a big tent representing the diverse Jewish community and draw on our collective core values to address crucial issues.
  • Activate the NY Jewish community to work on local criminal justice reform issues in coalition with our non-Jewish partners.

With a strong legacy of fighting for civil rights, the Jewish community can have an significant voice and influence towards mitigating an ongoing disaster.

Registration Fee: $25*

*financial assistance is available

Sunday, September 15th
8:30 a.m – 4:30 p.m.
(Lunch is included)

UJA-Federation of New York
130 East 59th Street, Manhattan
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View Agenda »

View Speakers »

Steering Committee »

What You Will Learn:

  • Understanding racial disparities and bias in the criminal justice system
  • The importance of criminal justice reform to the Jewish community
  • Current strategies to end mass incarceration in New York
  • Planning Jewish community advocacy and engagement

Speakers Include Experts, Advocates, and Government Officials:


Rep. Hakeem Jeffries
U.S. Congress, N.Y. Dist. 8

Topeka K. Sam
The Ladies of Hope Ministries

Michael Waldman
Brennan Center for Justice

Erin Leigh George
Citizen Action of New York

Jason Flom
Lava Records

Dana Kaplan
NYC Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice Justice Initiatives and Close Rikers

Daniel Loeb
Third Point LLC

Vidal Guzman

Rabbi Nicole Auerbach
Central Synagogue

Khalil A. Cumberbatch
New Yorkers United for Justice

Joseph Popcun
New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services

Insha Rahman
Vera Institute of Justice


Professor Kimora
John Jay College of Criminal Justice

Evie Litwok
Witness to Mass Incarceration

Elizabeth Gaynes
Osborne Association

Piper Anderson
Create Forward

Chief Chris Burbank
Strategic Partnerships with the Center for Policing Equity

Ruth Messinger
American Jewish World Service

Rabbi Lev Meirowitz Nelson

Justine Olderman
The Bronx Defenders

Johnny Perez
National Religious Campaign Against Torture

Rev. John Vaughn
Auburn Theological Seminary

Andre Ward
The Fortune Society

Cheryl Wills

Yehudah Webster
Jews for Racial & Economic Justice

James Johnson
Brennan Center for Justice

Crystal Walthall
Faith in New York

Click here for Agenda

Click here for Speakers

Click here for Steering Committee

Conference has been made possible by funding from UJA Federation of New York
Supported by The Margaret and Daniel Loeb Foundation and the Leon Toby Cooperman Family Foundation