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About and Free Ticket
The Second Chances and Prisoner Reentry in Wisconsin Conference was a one-day event at Madison’s Monona Terrace that examined Governor Thompson’s proposal to create a second chance for offenders, enhancing Wisconsin’s workforce and creating a path for prisoner re-entry, which also had potential to solve Wisconsin’s coming labor shortage by rehabilitating prisoners. Building upon the Spring 2018 criminal justice reform conference, the Thompson Center engaged center-affiliated faculty, invited scholars, and policymakers interested in changing the criminal justice system through methods that are likely to achieve bipartisan support, such as the use of prosecutorial discretion and prisoner re-entry programs. A free lunch was also be included with registration for this free event.
To view the conference, please see the next tab – “Special Thanks : Wisconsin Eye”
Special Thanks : The Wisconsin Eye - conference recordings
The Thompson Center would like to extend our most gracious thank you to our partner The Wisconsin Eye, which streamed and recorded this event. The conference described here and many other intellectually stimulating events can be found on their website: https://wiseye.org
A word from The Wisconsin Eye
Our mission is to provide unfettered access to the actions of our state government and to the full range of forums, activities, and participants throughout our state that constitute community and public life in Wisconsin; To provide access to the public policy debate and decision-making process without editing, commentary, or analysis and with a balanced presentation of points of view; To provide elected and appointed officials and others who would influence public policy a direct conduit to the audience without filtering, or otherwise distorting their points of view; To employ production values, and to conduct all aspects of our operations, consistent with these principles.
00:05 Ryan Owen – Thompson Center Director
06:15 Tommy G. Thompson – 42nd Governor of Wisconsin (1987-2001)
17:00 Kevin Carr – Secretary designee of the Wisconsin Department of Corrections
Panel 1 : How Private Businesses Train and Employ Re-Entering Prisoners
01:18 Eve Hall – President of the Milwaukee Urban League
07:55 Sadique Isahaku – Milwaukee Area Technical College, Dean at the School of Liberal Arts and Science
12:50 Phillip Lowery – Johnson Controls, Vertical Market Director
22:05 Thomas LeBel – UW Milwaukee Faculty, Thompson Center Research Awardee
29:07 Chris Reader – WI Manufacturers and Commerce, Director of Health and Human Resources Policy
Panel 2 : Challenges of Prisoner Reentry
01:15 Melinda Tempelis – District Attorney, Outgamie County
05:33 Avery Goodrich Jr. – Defense Attorney, Former Prosecutor
16:57 Brian Hayes – Department of Administration, Division of Hearings and Appeals
32:05 Grant Duwe – Research Director, Minnesota Department of Corrections
40:50 Christian Gossett – District Attorney, Winnebago County WI
50:20 Kelli Thompson – Wisconsin State Public Defender
Panel 3 (partial) Community Models and Former Prisoner Experiences with Reentry
01:00 Michael Jahr – The Badger Institute
13:45 Terri Strodthoff – Founder and Executive Director, The Alma Center
25:35 Sarah Ferber – Associate Director, Ex-Prisoners Organizing (EXPO)
37:10 David Pate – UW Milwaukee Faculty, Thompson Center Research Awardee
54:25 Rick Raemisch – Former Secretary, Wisconsin and Colorado Department of Corrections
1:14:35 Keynote Speaker: Craig DeRoche – Prison Fellowship, Fmr. Speaker of the House
Date, Time, Location
Date: March 7, 2019
9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Doors open at 8:30a.m. with coffee and light fare available
Location: Monona Terrace, Madison, WI
1 John Nolen Dr, Madison, WI 53703
8:30 am Doors Open
9:00 – 9:05am Welcome and Opening Remarks
9:05 – 9:30am Why Second Chances and Prisoner Re-entry?
Kevin Carr; Tommy Thompson
9:30 – 9:55am Cost-Benefit Analysis of a Second Chance Proposal for Wisconsin
Maddie Koolbeck; Patrick Landers; Amy Maniola; Craig Vruwink
9:55 – 11:00am How Private Businesses Train and Employ Re-entering Prisoners
Eve Hall; Sadique Isahaku; Thomas LeBel; Philip Lowery; Chris Reader;
11:00 – 11:10am Break
11:10 – 12:20pm Challenges of Prisoner Re-entry: Perspectives from Defense, Prosecutors, and Others
Grant Duwe; Avery Goodrich Jr; Christian Gossett;Brian Hayes; Melinda Tempelis; Kelli Thompson;
12:20 – 1:20pm Roundtable Discussion: Successful Reforms and Prospects for Implementing in Wisconsin
Jeremy Faison; Evan Goyke; Rob Hutton; Cecelia Klingele; Antonio Parkinson
Plated Lunch (provided)
1:20 – 1:30pm Break
1:30 – 2:40pm Community Models and Former Prisoner Experiences with Reentry
Sarah Ferber; Michael Jahr; David Pate; Rick Raemisch; Terri Strodthoff; Lena Taylor
2:40 – 3:20pm Bipartisan Strategies: Lessons for Achieving Change
3:20 – 3:30pm Making Prisoner Re-entry a Reality in Wisconsin
Cost-Benefit Analysis of the Second Chance Skills Institute
Below is the condensed and abbreviated version of a UW-Madison cost-benefit study done in the lead up to this conference, the results of which will inform discussion among our featured panelists. The full report can be found under our websites research tab, or by clicking here.
Cost-Benefit Analysis of the Second Chance Skills Institute
By Maddie Koolbeck, Patrick Landers, Amy Maniola, Noah Roberts, Craig Vruwink
On behalf of Governor Tommy Thompson and the Tommy G. Thompson Center on Public Leadership, we conducted a cost-benefit analysis of a proposal to convert an existing correctional facility into the Second Chance Skills Institute (SCSI). The SCSI would provide educational and other rehabilitative programming to individuals in order to improve post-release employment outcomes to fill labor gaps in Wisconsin as well as reduce rates of reincarceration. We analyze two alternatives for the SCSI and predict that each would have positive net benefits for society.
The SCSI was modeled to be located in the current Racine Youth Offender Correctional Facility (RYOCF) after a facility conversion occurs. RYOCF serves as an ideal location as its current capacity of 450 individuals offers an appropriate scale and its location is near employers and the post-release residencies of a large fraction of people in prison. The SCSI would provide correctional education and employment-based social and emotional development programming similar to programs currently offered by the Wisconsin Department of Corrections (DOC).
To identify the eligible population, a number of requirements would be set. Eligible individuals would have to be near their release date from prison and completed high school or its equivalent. Additionally, those interested would undergo a screening process to determine if their interest and aptitude make them good candidates for the program. Under Alternative 1, the initial programming would be limited to individuals who committed nonviolent crimes.
The SCSI would provide employment-based social and emotional development programming, vocational training, and earned release opportunities. The social and emotional development programming would consist of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and substance use disorder therapy. Individuals with substance use disorders would begin the programming in a one-year long therapeutic community and then proceed to six months of vocational training. Individuals without substance use disorders would start immediately with vocational training and CBT that would last for six months. Program graduates would receive both a vocational training certificate recognized by industry and a rehabilitation certificate, recognizing that they successfully completed these programs. Individuals would then gain three months earned release during which they would be under community supervision. The SCSI would make use of partnerships with educational institutions and major businesses in the area to provide the training and help create employment opportunities for participants upon release. The funding for the SCSI would come from a variety of sources, including current state correctional funds, Pell Grant funds, and eventual repayment by the individuals. To cover the increased costs from this program, each program graduate would be required to pay back the equivalent of their correctional education costs.
Alternative 2 would widen the eligibility requirements to include all people who are incarcerated rather than just individuals who committed nonviolent crimes. In addition, vocational programming would be offered to 75 percent of the population while 25 percent of the individuals would be eligible for postsecondary education. The postsecondary education is expected to take two years to complete and graduates would receive an associate degree diploma. Otherwise, the programming sequence and inclusion of CBT, therapeutic communities, and earned release would all remain the same. Lastly, funding contributions from graduates of the program would not be expected in this alternative to maximize their well-being and incentives to work.
Program Costs and Benefits
To quantify the net benefits to society from the SCSI, we estimated costs and benefits for each alternative over a 50-year lifespan. Both alternatives require upfront costs to convert the facility to an appropriate configuration and ongoing costs to provide each of the relevant services to participants. The programming is expected to generate short-term, long-term, and potential benefits. Short-term benefits occur while participants are in prison or up to one year after release. These benefits include reductions in substance use and suicide, and cost savings from reduced prison time due to earned release. Long-term benefits, which occur more than one year after release, include reduced crime rates. Potential (uncertain) benefits include reductions in prison misconduct, increased earnings, and spillover benefits from increased educational levels.
Using results from the literature on similar programs and Wisconsin-specific statistics when possible, we monetize each of these costs and benefits and calculate net benefits (benefits minus costs). To account for the sensitivity of our results to uncertainty about program impacts, costs, and benefits, we perform a Monte Carlo simulation. In a Monte Carlo simulation, instead of using point estimates for parameters to calculate a single estimate of net benefits, researchers can specify ranges of likely values for variables and draw random values from these distributions. This allows researchers to create a distribution of possible values of net benefits. We report summary statistics of our findings in Table 1. For Alternative 1, we find a mean present value of $40.3 million in net benefits, with 85 percent of trials resulting in a positive value of net benefits. For Alternative 2, we find a mean present value of $65.3 million in net benefits, with over 99 percent of trials resulting in a positive value of net benefits.
Table 1: Summary of Monte Carlo Estimates of Net Benefits
|Percent of Trials with Positive Net Benefits|
By comparing the benefits and costs of individual program components, we observe that correctional education is responsible for the majority of the program’s net benefits, particularly from the predicted increased earnings. However, correctional education’s effect on earnings is under-researched and highly uncertain, so we conducted sensitivity analyses and determined that, in order for the SCSI program to generate a positive net social value, the SCSI program would need to generate permanent or multi-year increases in participant earnings. Correctional education in isolation would likely not have positive net benefits from just reductions in crime and reincarceration. The cognitive behavioral therapy program reduces suicide, misconduct, crime, and reincarceration, benefits which far outweigh the costs of CBT. The ongoing costs of providing substance use treatment are quite high and exceed its benefits, but is invaluable for expanding the program to serve people with substance use problems. Finally, the earned release component has very large net benefits.
While all of the costs would be borne by the state government under the current model, only a portion of the social benefits are also fiscal benefits to the state. The earned release benefits are large and accrue to the state, as does the majority of the crime and reincarceration costs because they are for criminal justice and prison expenses. A portion of the substance use benefits would accrue to the state government because part of this total is for medical costs that are often borne by public payers such as the prison health care system or Medicaid. Finally, the state would recoup a portion of any increases in lifetime earnings and spillover effects from increased tax revenues, reduced public safety-net expenditures, any cost-sharing provisions, and other cost savings for individuals released from prison who stay in Wisconsin.
Because both alternatives yield positive net benefits, we recommend that Wisconsin policymakers pursue implementing a SCSI model. To maximize benefits, we recommend that policymakers consider both including individuals who have committed violent crimes and offering increased amounts of earned release to successful individuals because there are large benefits associated with these policies. Finally, if implemented, we recommend that Wisconsin conduct an extensive evaluation of the SCSI in order to determine its effectiveness and whether it should be replicated elsewhere.
Presenters and Moderators List
Kevin Carr, Secretary, Wisconsin Department of Corrections
Craig DeRoche, Prison Fellowship
Grant Duwe, State of Minnesota Department of Corrections
Jeremy Faison, Representative, State of Tennessee Legislature
Sarah Ferber, Associate Director, EX-Prisoners Organizing
Avery Goodrich Jr., Defense Attorney, Former Prosecutor
Christian Gossett, District Attorney Winnebago County
Evan Goyke, Representative, State of Wisconsin Legislature
Eve M. Hall, Ph.D., President and CEO of the Milwaukee Urban League
Brian Hayes, DOA Division Hearings and Appeals
Rob Hutton, Representative, State of Wisconsin Legislature
Michael Jahr,Badger Institute
Cecelia Klingele, UW-Madison Law School
Thomas LeBel, UW-Milwaukee
Phillip Lowery, Johnson Controls
Antonio Parkinson, Representative, State of Tennessee Legislature
David Pate, UW-Milwaukee
Rick Raemisch, former WI and CO DOC Secretary
Chris Reader, Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce
Terri Strodthoff, Alma Center
Lena Taylor, Senator, State of Wisconsin Legislature
Melinda Tempelis, DA Outagamie County, WI
Kelli Thompson, State of WI Public Defender’s Office
Tommy Thompson, former Governor and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary
Second Chance Skills Project Team
- Maddie Koolbeck
- Patrick Landers
- Amy Maniola
- Craig Vruwing
Presenter and Moderator biographies
Presenters and Moderators
Kevin A. Carr is the Secretary-designee for the Wisconsin Department of Corrections. Kevin previously worked as the U.S. Marshal in the Eastern District of Wisconsin and was appointed to that position by President Barack Obama. Previously, he spent 30 years working in the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office where he held numerous positions. As an Inspector, Carr served as the second in charge of daily operations for the agency. He was instrumental in the creation of the Milwaukee County Criminal Justice Council. He has received post-graduate certificates from Harvard University, the FBI National Academy, and Northwestern University. Carr is currently going through the confirmation process and has testified in front of the Wisconsin Senate Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety.”
Craig DeRoche serves as senior vice president for advocacy and public policy at Prison Fellowship, the nation’s largest outreach to prisoners, former prisoners, and their families. He leads the organization’s efforts to advance restorative criminal justice reform at the state and federal levels. A recognized subject-matter expert, he has testified before Congress and confers with lawmakers to help them design legislation that prioritizes accountability, community participation, and second chances.
Grant Duwe is the Research Director for the Minnesota Department of Corrections, where he develops predictive assessments, forecasts the state’s prison population, and conducts research studies and program evaluations. He is the author of two books and more than 60 peer-reviewed academic publications on a wide variety of correctional topics. In addition to serving as an academic adviser for criminal justice reform for the American Enterprise Institute, he is a non-resident scholar at Baylor University’s Institute for Studies of Religion.
Jeremy Faison has been a representative in the Tennessee General Assembly since 2010. He was the primary sponsor of a major criminal justice reform package, the Fresh Start Act, which was unanimously approved in the state assembly in April 2018.
Sarah Ferber is the newest organizer in the WISDOM Network. She is an Associate Director and chief organizer for Chippewa Valley EX-Prisons Organizing (EXPO), and she balances her passion for organizing formerly incarcerated people with her social work studies at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and motherhood.
Avery Goodrich Jr.
Avery Goodrich graduated from the University of Toledo College of law and has held his license for over 30 years. He has extensive experience handling cases in employment and labor in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Christian Gossett has been District Attorney for Winnebago County, Wisconsin since 2007, and has spent his tenure working to find ways to evaluate criminal justice processes and outcomes and to improve system effectiveness. Gossett has also focused on building community partnerships and creating and implementing programs that serve both the rehabilitative needs of low-level offenders and the quality of life and safety of the community. Throughout his work, Gossett has advocated for the importance of academic research, science, and evidence-based decision making to criminal justice reform.
Evan Goyke is a Representative in Wisconsin State Assembly and for the 2019-2020 legislative session will serve on the Joint Committee on Finance and the Corrections committee. He grew up in Madison, before moving to Milwaukee to attend Marquette University Law School. Prior to his Election in 2012, he served as an attorney in the Office of the Wisconsin State Public Defender and as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Marquette.
Dr. Eve Hall is the President & CEO of the Milwaukee Urban League. Dr. Hall has extensive leadership experience in education, government and non-profit organizations. The core of her work has been fundraising, building programs and partnerships to increase education and career opportunities for students, enhancing professional training and development for adults while leveraging the power of education, business, government and community working together. Previously she was the President and CEO of the African American Chamber of Commerce of Wisconsin.
Brian Hayes is the Administrator of the Division of Hearings and Appeals in Wisconsin’s Department of Administration. He has worked in the Department of Administration since 1998 and spent 10 years as an administrative law judge. Prior to that he worked in the Wisconsin Legislature for seven years. Hayes holds a law degree from UW-Madison.
Rob Hutton is a Representative in the Wisconsin State Assembly and currently sits on six committees including as the Chair of the Government Accountability and Oversight committee and the Corrections committee. Prior to his election in 2012, he spent 25 years as the executive and owner of a trucking and warehousing firm in Milwaukee. He also spent some time as the Supervisor for the Waukesha County Board.
Michael Jahr is vice president of outreach and special projects at the Badger Institute. He previously served as communications director at The Kern Family Foundation and as vice president for communications at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. He spent 10 years as a communications director and press secretary on Capitol Hill.Jahr’s work has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Weekly Standard, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, The Detroit News and many other outlets. Jahr is a founding board member of Launch MKE, a nonprofit that delivers entrepreneurial development services to underserved communities in Milwaukee. He is also a member of the Milwaukee Reentry Council.
Professor Klingele’s Academic research focuses on criminal justice administration, with an emphasis on community supervision of those on conditional release. She is Associate Reporter for the American Law Institute’s Model Penal Code, External Co-Director of the University of Minnesota Robina Institute’s Sentencing Law & Policy Program, and past co-chair of the Academic Committee of the American Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section. Professor Professor Klingele teaches courses in criminal law, Constitutional criminal procedure, policing, and sentencing and corrections.
“An Assessment of a Vocational Training
Thomas P. LeBel, PhD, is an associate professor in the Department of Criminal Justice & Criminology in the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee’s Helen Bader School of Social Welfare. His research focuses on prisoner reintegration, desistance from crime, the stigma of incarceration, drug treatment courts, and interventions for criminal justice involved women with drug and alcohol problems.
As North American Director for the state government market for Johnson Controls, Phillip Lowery leads teams in driving energy efficiency opportunities that help state agencies improve their facilities and infrastructure in a way that provides tax relief and revenue generation. Phillip keeps pace with the demands and challenges facing state agencies by engaging key government and industry leaders and remaining actively involved with the American Correctional Association, National Association of State Energy Officials, the Energy Services Coalition, and other groups. Phillip earned his MBA in Finance from Texas Tech University and his Master’s in Industrial Engineering Management from Clemson University.
Antonio Parkinson has been a representative in the Tennessee General Assembly since 2011. He has consistently focused on promoting strong measures for public education and criminal justice reform. Additionally he hasspearheaded numerous community events and initiatives such as town hall meetings, creation of The Voice of Raleigh and Frayser Community Action Network, The Raleigh Fire Victims Fund Donation Center, Toys in the Garden, and many others. He was a major sponsor of a criminal justice reform package, the Fresh Start Act, which was unanimously approved in the state assembly in April 2018.
David Pate is the Chair and an Associate Professor of Social Work at UW-Milwaukee. He is also an Affiliate of Institute for Child and Family Well-Being at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and an Affiliated Associate Professor of the Institute for Research on Poverty. He received his Ph.D. in Social Welfare from UW-Madison and his work primarily studies how black men are affected by the social welfare system and the challenges that impede their ability to attain economic security.
Rick Raemisch is a Wisconsin native who is a former Dane County undercover narcotics officer, assistant DA, and federal prosecutor. He served as Dane County Sheriff and Wisconsin’s Corrections Secretary before serving as Colorado’s secretary of Corrections. Rick received national attention after he was the first corrections secretary in the US to ever spend 24 hours in solitary. Under his leadership, Colorado was the first state to end long-term use of solitary confinement.
Chris Reader is the Director of Health & Human Resources Policy at Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce, the state’s largest trade association representing employers. Chris works with lawmakers and state agencies to advance pro-growth reforms in a number of policy areas including employment law, unemployment insurance, worker’s compensation, education, workforce development, health care and telecommunications.
Second Chance Skills Project Team
Hailing from UW-Madison’s Lafollette School of Public Affairs, the project team consist of five UW-Students;
Maddie Koolbeck – Maddie Koolbeck is currently a Master of Public Administration student at the UW-Madison La Follette School of Public Affairs. She completed her undergraduate degree at Coe College in Economics and Environmental Studies. She is part of an academic team that spent the 2018 Fall Semester studying the costs and benefits of correctional education.
Amy Maniola – Amy Maniola is currently pursuing a Master of Public Affairs at the La Follette School of Public Affairs. She also earned her undergraduate degree in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In Fall 2018, she worked with a team of La Follette School students to analyze the costs and benefits of correctional education programming.
Craig Vruwing – Craig Vruwink is currently pursuing a Master of Public Affairs student at the La Follette School of Public Affairs. He completed his undergraduate degree at Beloit College in History, Education and Youth Studies, and Political Science. Craig was part of an academic team that spent the 2018 Fall Semester conducting a cost-benefit analysis of correctional education programming.
Patrick Landers – Patrick Landers is a second-year Master of Public Affairs student at the La Follette School of Public Affairs and project assistant with the Institute for Research on Poverty at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He has worked as a research analyst at MDRC and summer associate at the Congressional Budget Office.
Terri Strodthoff, PhD is the Founder and Executive Director of the Alma Center, a community-based agency in Milwaukee working to break the cycle of violence in families. The Alma Center provides a pioneering approach of Healing Focused Care and a positive peer community to support men’s peaceful and lasting transformation. Dr. Strodhoff has more than 25 years’ experience in the field of domestic violence, including program design and administration, evaluation and direct service delivery. She received her PhD in Political Science from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. She has co-authored articles and is a regular presenter and trainer for national and local audiences.
Lena Taylor has been a Senator in the Wisconsin State Senate since 2004. In the past she has held a seat on the Senate Judiciary Committee and has co-chaired the Joint Committee of Finance. She has extensive experience with working on criminal justice reform efforts at the state level. Prior to her work as a Senator she practiced law as a public defender in Milwaukee and opened Taylor and Associates Law Office.
Melinda Tempelis is the District Attorney for Outagamie County and has been a prosecutor since 2003. In 2002, she received her law degree from UW-Madison and a Masters in Public Affairs from the La Follette School of Public Affairs. Melinda has handled all types of cases, but has a passion for prosecuting victim focused crimes, including domestic violence, sexual assault and child maltreatment cases. She is active on many multi-disciplinary and committees and organizations associated with the criminal justice system where she strives to address system improvement and evidence based practices. She has been a member of the Governor’s Juvenile Justice Commission since 2011 and a board member of the Wisconsin District Attorney’s Association for over 12 years.
Kelli Thompson received her law degree from Marquette University in 1996. She immediately began work with the Wisconsin State Public Defender’s office. In 2011 she was appointed to be the State Public Defender. Kelli is also active in a variety of community organizations, including Wisconsin Women in Government Past-President and Past-Vice President, the Wisconsin Literacy Council Past-President and the Wisconsin Women’s Health Foundation.
Tommy G. Thompson
Tommy Thompson was elected to a seat in the Wisconsin State Assembly in 1966, and was inaugurated as governor of Wisconsin 1987. He won his next three gubernatorial elections, winning an unprecedented four terms; making him the longest serving Governor in Wisconsin history. Midway through his 4th term, Governor Thompson was selected by George W. Bush as Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.