Visions of Justice: Urbana-champaign
What Does a Truly Just Society Look Like? How Does It Feel? How Do We Get There?
Oct 21, 2021
Open to the public
The event will take place on Wednesday, October 27, 2021 from 6:00-7:30 p.m. during a live Zoom webinar. This event is free and open to the public, and registration is required. Register to attend below.
Moderator: Meredith Nnoka
More information about the event and our panel of speakers coming soon!
This event will include closed captioning in English. If you require other accommodations, please contact Meredith Nnoka at email@example.com at least 24 hours prior to the scheduled event.
ABOUT THE VISIONS OF JUSTICE SERIES
Visions of Justice is an eight-part video and discussion series co-produced by Illinois Humanities in partnership with VAM STUDIO and features an array of Illinois organizers, artists, community members, and others working to confront the impacts of the criminal legal system and advance justice where they live. Learn more
About the Panelists
Bethany Little is the founder and Executive Director of WIN Recovery, a comprehensive reentry transitional program for formerly incarcerated women. The programs and services provided largely come from the success of Little’s own lived experiences.
Jaclyn Stucker (“Jaxx”) spent her childhood in and out of foster care and group homes. Her experiences of trauma throughout her life led to a battle with addiction, which in turn led to many years in and out of prison. Jaxx reached out to WIN Recovery in July 2019 after completing inpatient treatment. Since her time with WIN Recovery, Jaxx has participated in the Odyssey Project through the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, obtained housing and full-time employment, graduated from Drug Court, and completed probation.
Rodney Gross is a Resource Navigator/Peer Mentor at FirstFollowers. Incarcerated in 1976 and recently released in 2020, Rodney spent the majority of his adult life behind walls. His education and training include an associate’s degree, a certificate in business management, computer training, and coursework through the Education Justice Project. Rodney’s lived experiences taught him how to navigate through the worst situations, while deeply instilling emotional intelligence skills geared toward survival basics. Currently, he makes use of these lived experiences by assisting returning citizens with their transition back to their communities.
Tamika Davis is a Community Navigator/Peer Mentor at FirstFollowers. Born and raised in Champaign, IL, at 11 years old, Tamika became a ward of the state. She was shuffled from multiple homes, where she faced multiple experiences of abuse and neglect, which resulted in internalized anger and mistrust. Her risky behavior in the streets soon led to jail, which became a revolving door. In 1999, Tamika was sentenced to 121 months in U.S. federal prison. Upon her release in April 2008, she developed a strong passion to help others in her community. Tamika strongly believes that “those closest to the problem possess the right solution.”
Crushion Stubbs is an Organizer/Peer Mentor at FirstFollowers. Born and raised in Illinois, Crushion’s life was directly impacted by the criminal legal system at age 19 when he was sentenced to 45 years in prison. He was recently released in 2020 to FirstFollowers’ transitional house. His training and education include an associate’s degree and certificates in culinary arts, restaurant management, and commercial custodial services. He also participates in Toast Masters as an advanced Bronze Leader. An involved community member, Crushion now serves as a mentor, youth tutor, organizer, and public speaker. As an active leader and advocate for people impacted by the criminal legal system, he hopes to raise awareness throughout society regarding policies that enable permanent punishment after the completion of sentences in prisons and jails.
About Vam Studio
VAM STUDIO is an award-winning production company and film collective behind some of the most disruptive narratives, commercials, and branded content in culture today. VAM is an unapologetic, diverse team of filmmakers working from a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and disciplines while standing out on a global scale.
The VAM STUDIO team includes filmmakers and writers Sam Bailey, Fatimah Asghar, Jordan Phelps and founder Vincent Martell.
About the Moderator
Meredith Nnoka, the Envisioning Justice Fellow at Illinois Humanities, is a Chicago-based writer, educator, and social justice advocate originally from Southern Maryland. She studied the intersecting histories of Black expressive arts and social movements at Smith College for her BA and later the University of Wisconsin-Madison for her MA, where she first considered the questions now central to her work: What is the power in bearing witness, and how can controlling our own narratives be used toward liberation?