Peter Wagner chosen as a finalist for the Maria Leavey Tribute Award

by Leah Sakala, April 30, 2012  

Prison Policy Initiative Executive Director Peter Wagner has been chosen as a finalist for the Maria Leavey Tribute Award for his decade-long work to end prison-based gerrymandering. Campaign for America’s Future presents this award annually to honor an “unsung progressive hero.”

Campaign for America’s Future recently announced the five finalists and opened public voting:

Two Occupy movement volunteers, a Chicago community organizer, an Atlanta health care activist and a crusader against “prison-based gerrymandering” have been nominated for the annual Maria Leavey Tribute Award, which honors an unsung progressive hero. The deserving person you select will receive the award at the June 18-20 “Take Back the American Dream” Conference. The five finalists were announced earlier today on our conference website, and now the voting begins to select a winner.

Peter launched the movement to end prison-based gerrymandering ten years ago with the Prison Policy Initiative’s first report, Importing Constituents: Prisoners and Political Clout in New York. He found that an archaic Census Bureau rule enabled legislators with prisons in their districts to claim incarcerated people as “constituents,” bar them from the polls, and then use that extra clout to advocate for more prison expansion.

Over the last decade, Peter worked to expose the problem of prison-based gerrymandering and bring new organizations and leaders in to the movement. The bi-partisan urban and rural movement has won many victories. Four states and hundreds of local governments around the country refuse to dilute the votes of everyone who doesn’t live immediately next to a prison, and the Census Bureau has started to take notice.

Let’s vote for Peter to send the message that prison-based gerrymandering has no place in America’s future!

Meet us

  • Jan 25-27, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner will be in Charlotte, North Carolina for meetings about redistricting and ending prison gerrymandering. Contact us if you’d like to meet up.
  • February 5, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner will be in New York for the reception of the exhibition, Prison Obscura, curated by Prison Photography editor Pete Brook. The exhibition includes Prison Map by Josh Begley and Proliferation by Paul Rucker, both of which rely on Prison Policy Initiative data to show the scale of mass incarceration. The event will be held at Parsons School of Design from 6:30-8:30pm and a Curator’s Talk by Pete Brooks at 5:45pm.
  • February 6, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner will be at Yale for a panel presentation at the Equality Re-Imagined Conference.
  • February 20, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner, Board Member Amanda Alexander and Advisory Board Member Bruce Reilly will present on a panel entitled “The fight against mass incarceration: Combining litigation and policy work for systemic change” at RebLaw at Yale Law School from 3-4:30pm.
  • February 24, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner will be speaking to the American Constitution Society Chapter at UConn School of Law at 12:30pm. Topics will include mass incarceration, prison gerrymandering, sentencing enhancement zones and more.

Not near you?
Invite us to your city, college or organization.

Events

  • Jan 25-27, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner will be in Charlotte, North Carolina for meetings about redistricting and ending prison gerrymandering. Contact us if you’d like to meet up.
  • February 5, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner will be in New York for the reception of the exhibition, Prison Obscura, curated by Prison Photography editor Pete Brook. The exhibition includes Prison Map by Josh Begley and Proliferation by Paul Rucker, both of which rely on Prison Policy Initiative data to show the scale of mass incarceration. The event will be held at Parsons School of Design from 6:30-8:30pm and a Curator’s Talk by Pete Brooks at 5:45pm.
  • February 6, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner will be at Yale for a panel presentation at the Equality Re-Imagined Conference.
  • February 20, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner, Board Member Amanda Alexander and Advisory Board Member Bruce Reilly will present on a panel entitled “The fight against mass incarceration: Combining litigation and policy work for systemic change” at RebLaw at Yale Law School from 3-4:30pm.
  • February 24, 2015:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner will be speaking to the American Constitution Society Chapter at UConn School of Law at 12:30pm. Topics will include mass incarceration, prison gerrymandering, sentencing enhancement zones and more.

Not near you?
Invite us to your city, college or organization.

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