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Mark Holden: Collaboration on criminal justice reform works

February 22, 2019

min read

Last year’s landmark criminal justice reform happened because people from all walks of life united for a common purpose: to lift up people seeking to improve their lives and communities.

This year, there are “more and more opportunities” for even more reforms in states across the country, Koch Industries Senior Vice President and General Counsel Mark Holden said during a panel at the 14th annual John Jay/Harry Frank Guggenheim Symposium on Crime in America. Moderated by The Marshall Project editor Bill Keller, the panel also featured Justice Action Network Executive Director Holly Harris and Ohio Senate President Larry Obhof.

Noting the importance of Alice Marie Johnson’s case and others who have experienced the criminal justice system firsthand, Holden called out Kim Kardashian West for bringing her story to the forefront of public consciousness.

“God bless her—and I mean that. She is a great advocate,” Holden said. “However you get someone through that door and get it done, I’m fine with it. Because of her advocacy for Alice, we got sentencing reform.”

Other aspects to consider moving forward, Holden said, include automatic expungement of criminal records for low-level, non-violent drug offenders, as well as other sentencing issues such as mandatory minimums and skills training for those reentering society.

Read more at The Crime Report.

Watch the full panel from John Jay College.