||Gerrell Tucker|| I was born on the westside of Chicago. For the most part I grew up on the Southside and came into my own in the Englewood area. I attended and graduated from The Prestigious Simeon Career Academy in 2006 and a little after a year later in the summer of 2007 I was arrested, convicted and then sentenced to 10yrs at 85% for 1st degree attempted murder. I was just 19 years old at the time. While incarcerated, especially towards the latter end on my sentence I began the process of reshaping my mind in order to change my ways so that my actions would reflect the man that I had grown into as oppose to the boy I was when I first entered the system. Since being released January 4, 2016 after serving 8 1/2 years I have been working effortlessly and diligently on utilizing everything that I learned form the whole ordeal to do and be better! And not just for me but for any and every other individual, man or women, who has been in the system to show them that just because you've been to prison for whatever reason that you can get out and live your life and be a productive citizen and thanks to FREEDOM HOUSE REENTRY EDUCATION and EMPLOYMENT CORPORATION I have been provided with a platform to do just that.
||Demetrius Cole|| Hello my name is Demetrius Cole, I am from the south side of Chicago, grew up in Humbolt Park. I enjoy reading, working out, and watching good movies. My goal here at Freedom House Reentry is to reach out and help in all that I can with whatever resources I can obtain in order to help anyone transitioning back into society to be a productive and positive citizen. I can tell you first hand that I understand how it feels to not be given a chance due to you having a criminal background. It becomes frustrating to a point, especially when you are trying to apply yourself and doing what's right. This is why I feel so strong about what Freedom House is trying to do in effort to help those that feel they have no sense of support, or resources.
||Earl Walker|| Mr. Earl M. Walker is the owner of the Head 2 Toe Fitness and Immaculate Cleaning & Hospitality. He is a Graduate Student (Criminal Justice) and has a B.S. in Psychology. A commitment to academic excellence resulted in his membership with the Phi Theta Kappa Honors Society. Mr. Walker’s passion to pursue Social Justice for the marginalized in society led to his advocacy with organizations including F.O.R.C.E., Life Builders United, Stop Mass Incarceration Network, Community Renewal Society and the Education Justice Project. He is a published Author, accomplished Motivational Speaker, and a Mentor to at-risk youth and returning citizens. Currently, Mr. Walker has founded G.U.T.S. (Give Up The Streets) an anti-violence campaign for individuals seeking to renounce their ties to criminal or misguided activities and become productive and successful members of their communities.
||Andre|| Hello my name is Andre Archer I was born on the south side of Chicago and unfortunately, became a victim of Chicago by involving myself in streets and got myself incarcerated at an early age. I was Incarcerated for approximately 20 years. Now I'm trying to better myself by working here at FREE and going to school for my CDL.
||Michael Reed|| Hello my name is Michael Reed and I am a proud FREE employee. I love the fact that I am apart of a organization that focuses on reducing recidivism. I was formerly incarcerated and I look forward to helping individuals stay focused and not return to their past. I love the fact that FREE is giving me this opportunity to help others and move up the ladder within this organization.
Volunteers & Interns:
Robert Ylagan is a senior at Fordham University in New York City where he is majoring in Psychology with a minor in Economics. Originally from Texas, he moved to New York to discover his true passions. Through his various courses in the Psychology Department, he has developed an ardent interest in working within the interdisciplinary field of law and psychology. He has a specific interest in reducing recidivism rates for victims of mental health through finding alternatives to incarceration. Working with FREE has given him the opportunity to begin his advocacy in mental health and reducing recidivism. This experience will allow him more involvement in the field of criminal justice.
My name is Kaitlin Bassett and I am in the middle of my second year of the business school at Georgia College. I intend to attend law school and pursue a career in public defense, so the legal system and all its' flaws directly impact my line of work. Being involved in criminal justice reform is very important to me, and I am happy to do what I can to help.
My name is Grace Huettel and I am a student at Scripps College. This year, I began to understand the profound implications of mass incarceration and recidivism in the United States. I am excited to learn more about these implications and work to end these cycles at FREE. Outside of school, I love to read, run, and explore the city of Chicago.
I am a 22 year old Political Science and International Affairs Major with a Minor in English at the University of North Georgia. I have a strong interest in Travel and helping others. I am a freelance photographer, but my dream is to be able to devote my life to something bigger than myself, and to leave this planet a better place than when I got here. I got interested in Free's get help program because I have seen so many good people get their lives thrown away by one bad choice, or their in ability to survive once they have been stamped and put into the "convict" box by society. The system is failing them, and free is something real that can impact so many people and insight real change.
My name is Krupa Patel and I am from Philadelphia PA. I am an incoming junior at the University of the Sciences, and currently working towards my bachelor's degree in Pharmaceutical Healthcare Business. I am very excited to be part of the committee for FREE and help raise awareness to this important issue. I believe that everyone should get a 2nd chance in life and never to give up. I love what this organization stands for and hope to make a difference in people's lives.
Sarah Kahn is a senior at Harvard University where she is concentration in Government with a joint in Psychology. Her interest in Government began during the 5th grade when she learned about Walmart workers who produced the clothes being forced to work in deplorable work conditions. Sarah learned about the inequalities affecting indigenous communities, researched the culture, and wrote a letter to the Walmart CEO to end these poor working conditions. Inspired by this experience, Sarah became invested in volunteer work starting her own non-profit called R1ZE, which, works to help women who have been in domestically abusive relationships. Sarah aspires to pursue a career in international human rights development and write policy for a government agency. When Sarah is not busy reading about current affairs , or studying she enjoys playing soccer and field hockey.
My name is Siboney Arias and I’m a first generation, Latinx womxn, from South Central Los Angeles. I am currently studying Art and Political Science at the University of California, Santa Barbara. I am invested in advocating for social justice change in several different ways. I want to bring awareness to the different institutional and systematic barriers which people of color face that often disable them from achieving success. I work to bring awareness to different marginalized communities through different programs at UCSB’s MultiCultural Center. Working with FREE is just one step towards helping people of color be re-integrated into society so that they can strive and be successful.