Richard Cruz
Troy Williams
Abby Madan

Barriers: A Conversation on Criminal Justice Storytelling 

Saturday September 8th, 11:10am

What are some problems in approaches to talking about and understanding prisons and the people impacted by them, and how can we collectively improve? How can we work to be more sensitive to the nuances of criminal justice reporting, and the way we tell stories about incarceration, right down to the very words we use?

Richard Cruz

Richard Cruz is a Program Manager at the Ahimsa Collective, Substance Abuse Treatment Counselor and Mediator. He also mentors to at-risk youth in the ReDirect Youth Diversion Program, Co-facilitator of Realize Restorative Justice Group and a Peer Counselor in the Substance Use Disorder Treatment Program at Valley State Prison. He organized, trained, and
facilitated groups in Cognitive Behavior Treatment (Criminal Thinking, Anger Management, Family Relation, Denial Management, Victims Impact, Substance Abuse). Richard has facilitated and participated in numerous other classes such as N.A., A.A., VHOPE (Victims Healing Others People through Empathy), Domestic Violence, Peace Education Program and Prisoners of Peace. Which offer support, connection, life skills, support services for youth, and promote healing in the community. Richard believes that there is no right or wrong, there is only different.

Troy Williams

While serving 18 years at San Quentin State Prison, Troy Williams founded the San Quentin Prison Report (SQOR), a media production company that produces radio and video content inside San Quentin. When incarcerated he also directed the San Quentin Prison Restorative Justice Roundtable, raising prisoner participation from less than 40 to over 200. In 2014, he accepted an award for excellence in journalism from the Society of Professional Journalists.

Abby Madan

Abby Madan is an award-winning independent journalist and audio producer. She interweaves sound and story to spark discovery, build empathy, and cultivate community. Her work has featured on NPR's WNYC, KJZZ, WCAI, WOUB, on the podcast network Canadaland, and in museum exhibits. She is a graduate of UC Berkeley, the Transom Story Workshop, and was once an NPR Next Generation Radio fellow. She is the producer/editor of the forthcoming documentary podcast, Historically Queer, about the lives of QPOC activists.