The 19th Annual Elected Officials Retreat provided thought-provoking presentations and discussions on two topics of critical importance to our region: poverty and mass incarceration.
The Retreat opened with a presentation on national trends of poverty and inequality from Dr. Alexandra Murphy, Assistant Professor, University of Michigan. Following Dr. Murphy’s presentation, Majority Leader Dave Reed presented an overview of his Beyond Poverty report, which outlined the findings of the House Majority Policy Committee’s look at barriers to exiting poverty for people across Pennsylvania. The committee’s report has inspired a number of legislative and regulatory changes to make state programs work better for those they are designed to assist. A panel of community leaders then presented on potential next steps to address poverty in Southwestern Pennsylvania.
On Friday, the Institute addressed the topic of criminal justice system reform with a welcome and introduction of the topic from the Institute’s chair, University of Pittsburgh Chancellor Emeritus Mark Nordenberg. Fred Thieman gave a presentation that examined the growth of jail and prison populations and the financial and social costs of incarceration to society. Presentations concluded with a panel discussion of jailing policies and practices by criminal justice leadership.
Coleman Award Winners
Please note that the titles and organizations listed reflect the position held by the awardee when he/she received the award.
- Bill Isler, former President and CEO, The Fred Rogers Center
- Charles Queenan, Chairman Emeritus, K&L Gates LLP