About the Fellowship

Central to our work is elevating the voices of individuals who are directly impacted by the legal system. That’s why we’ve launched the inaugural Justice Fellows Policy Program, which centers around a vibrant and nurturing community of directly impacted, formerly incarcerated individuals who have overcome the odds and attained their bachelor’s or master’s degree, created programs and organizations for the formerly incarcerated community, engaged in state legislative advocacy efforts, and more.

Throughout this fellowship, the Justice Fellows will use their lived experience to inform, review, amplify, and reflect on Ed Trust’s policy recommendations for justice-impacted students. Additionally, Justice Fellows will inform and guide Ed Trust’s structured engagements and convenings at the intersection of higher education policy and the criminal legal system.

Justice Fellows

Omari Amili
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Omari Amili

Frelimo "Omari" Amili is a father of six and program manager with a Seattle-based nonprofit called Choose 180. Following…

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Mary Baxter
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Mary Baxter

Mary Enoch Elizabeth Baxter, also known by her hip-hop name, “Isis Tha Saviour,” is an award-winning Philadelphia-based artist who…

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Montrell Carmouche
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Montrell Carmouche

At the age of 21, Montrell was sentenced to 262 months in federal prison. During their 20-year incarceration, Montrell…

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William Freeman III
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William Freeman III

William Freeman served more than 20 years in prison, where he discovered the transformative power of higher education by…

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Alexa Garza
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Alexa Garza

Alexa's passion for advocacy is rooted in her personal experience of incarceration and the stigma she faced in her…

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Rabia Qutab
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Rabia Qutab

Rabia’s life experience has transformed a perceived liability into an asset. As a formerly incarcerated young woman of color,…

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Patrick Rodriguez
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Patrick Rodriguez

Patrick was released from prison in December 2019, and since then, he has worked to serve those who have…

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Jarrod Wall
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Jarrod Wall

During his 26 years of incarceration, Jarrod earned several degrees (AA, BA, BS, MA) and had the privilege to…

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About the Advisory Board

Ed Trust has convened an advisory board of individuals with expertise in advocating for issues at the nexus of higher education policy and the criminal legal system. Ed Trust will rely on these board members for high-level guidance and advice on Ed Trust’s strategy for the Fellows program.

Justice Fellows Advisory Board

Stanley Andrisse, Ph.D.
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Stanley Andrisse, Ph.D.

Stanley Andrisse, Ph.D. is an endocrinologist scientist at Johns Hopkins Medicine Howard University College of Medicine. But he is…

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Terrell Blount
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Terrell Blount

Terrell Blount is the director of the Formerly Incarcerated College Graduates Network (FICGN), a nonprofit organization that promotes equity,…

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Erin Corbett, Ed.D.

Erin Corbett, Ed.D.

Erin Corbett, Ed.D. has spent nearly two decades in education access. Most recently, Erin was the assistant director for…

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Michelle Daniel Jones
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Michelle Daniel Jones

Michelle Daniel (Jones) is a fourth-year doctoral student in the American Studies program at New York University. While incarcerated,…

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Dr. Zaria Davis
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Dr. Zaria Davis

Dr. Zaria Davis is a senior associate with the Pretrial Justice Institute, where she advocates for safe, fair, and…

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Ivelisse Gilestra
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Ivelisse Gilestra

Ivelisse Gilestra currently works for College & Community Fellowship in New York as a community organizer. An advocate on…

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Jay Holder
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Jay Holder

Jay Holder is the director of the National Executive Council (NEC) at Columbia University’s Center for Justice, which supports…

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Bahiyyah Muhammad, Ph.D.

Bahiyyah Muhammad, Ph.D.

Bahiyyah Muhammad, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Criminology in the Department of Sociology at Howard University. She is…

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Reverend Vivian Nixon
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Reverend Vivian Nixon

Reverend Vivian Nixon has led College & Community Fellowship for 16 years. CCF combines higher education, civic engagement, and…

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Topeka K. Sam
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Topeka K. Sam

Topeka K. Sam is the founder and executive director of the Ladies of Hope Ministries (LOHM), co-founder of HOPE…

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Syrita Steib
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Syrita Steib

Syrita Steib is the founder and executive director of Operation Restoration, a nonprofit that creates opportunities for formerly incarcerated…

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Noel Vest, Ph.D.
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Noel Vest, Ph.D.

Noel Vest, Ph.D., is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Stanford University School of Medicine. His research interests include…

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Miea Walker
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Miea Walker

Miea Walker is a criminal justice advocate and prison abolitionist whose passion is addressing the intersectionality of race, class,…

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Tyrone Walker
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Tyrone Walker

Tyrone Walker is a juvenile lifer who was released in 2018, after serving nearly 25 years of imprisonment. Today,…

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Chris Wilson

Chris Wilson

Chris Wilson works as a visual artist and a social justice advocate, who splits his time between Baltimore and…

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