Curtis Ray Davis was arrested in September of 1990 in Compton, California and extradited to Shreveport, Louisiana on a warrant for 2nd Degree Murder: a crime he did not commit. Having previously enlisted in the U.S. Army, he believed in law and order and the moral correctness of the judiciary. However, without a shred of physical evidence, he was sentenced to life without parole in prison and served 25 years and 9 months at Angola State Penitentiary.
At Angola, he became aware of his skills for organizing and learning of the law. The warden drafted him into the State Certified Tutor Program where over a period of 7 years he was on the team that lowered the prison’s recidivism rate by 60% by addressing life skills as well as academics. His work in the law library gave him the tools that he needed to win his 9th Application for Post-Conviction Relief in the La. Supreme Court.
He was released from Angola Prison on July 8th, 2016 and immediately joined the fight for penal reform in Louisiana through his work as a public speaker, author, a Mental Health Specialist at Superior Counseling Service, the Shreveport Chapter organizer at Voice of the Experienced (VOTE), the Outreach Paralegal at the Southern Poverty Law Center, an advocate with Louisianans for Prison Alternatives, and a Parent Support Organizer at Step Up Louisiana. His first book “Slave State: Evidence of Apartheid in America” is a collection of essays written during his incarceration.
Curtis is the proud father of 3 children and lives with his wife in Shreveport, Louisiana.
Curtis was hired to serve as the Executive Director of ReEntry Mediation Institute of Louisiana on September 1, 2020.
Board of Directors
Sister Alison McCrary, SFCC
Sister Alison McCrary is a Catholic nun, a social justice attorney, a criminal justice reform advocate, community mediator, and a Spiritual Advisor on Louisiana’s death row. She most recently served as the Statewide Director of Operations for the Unanimous Jury Coalition working to abolish a 138-year-old Jim Crow law in Louisiana allowing a sentence of life imprisonment without a unanimous jury. She formerly served as the Executive Director of the National Police Accountability Project, President of the Louisiana Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild, and founding Director of the Community-Police Mediation at the New Orleans Office of the Independent Police Monitor. As a 2010 Soros Justice Advocacy Fellowship in New Orleans, she challenged and changed policing practices and policies to transform relationships between police officers and the bearers of New Orleans’ indigenous cultural traditions.
She works on issues related to criminal justice reform, immigrant rights, international human rights, cultural preservation, voting rights, disaster recovery, and provides support to various social justice movements and organizations locally, nationally, and internationally. Prior to law school, she worked at the Capital Post-Conviction Project of Louisiana providing litigation support on death penalty cases and at the United Nations monitoring the implementation of U.N. Security Council Resolutions relating to women, peace, and security. In 2009, she was an Ella Baker Fellow at the Center for Constitutional Rights. She received her J.D. from Loyola University’s College of Law in New Orleans and her B.A. in English at Georgia State University in Atlanta. She also completed coursework and programs at Johannes Gutenburg Universität in Mainz, Germany, University of Surrey in London, Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, Loyola University Chicago, and Catholic Theological Union. Alison serves as the Board President for the Re-Entry Mediation Institute of Louisiana.
Rev. Dr. Bruce McClue was born to the union of the late Bruce McClue, Jr and the late Delores Terry Venison on September 18, 1963 in New Orleans, LA. He was reared in the upper ninth ward of the city and attended it public schools. After graduating from McDonogh #35, Pastor McClue attended Dillard University where he majored in chemistry. There he met, fell in love and married the former Donna Lynn Jones. They married in 1986 and from that union were born three children. James Andra, and Jacob. In 1989, Pastor McClue accepted his calling into the ministry in southwest desert of Texas after what he described as a year long battle with God. He said, his cries in the wilderness led him to accept the Will of God. On his return from Texas in the summer of 1989, Pastor spoke with his Pastor, the late Thomas Taylor of the Galilee B.C. His pastor informed that he should go into prayer and fasting for a week to be sure on his calling in Christ. After a week of fasting and praying, Pastor return to Reverend Taylor with the same vigor to preach the gospel. On February 4th 1990, Pastor had his trial sermon. It came from Exodus, “Stand Still and Behold the Salvation of the Lord”. Under the tutelage of Reverend Taylor, Pastor McClue grew with boldness and conviction in the Word. In August of 1991, Pastor was ordained and since his ordination, Pastor has been on missionary journeys to Indiana, Illinois and Mississippi.
He has a Master of Divinity from Union Baptist Seminary and a Doctorate in Divinity from Slidell Baptist Seminary. He has preached on our Nation’s Capital Steps, preached several times in Angola Prison. Has been an active participant in the pass with different outreach ministries such as Christian Community Youth against Drugs Foundation with he served on the board of Directors. He taught evangelism seminars, mentoring programs for many churches in the city. He has been a professor at Union Baptist Seminary, where he taught Biblical History, Homiletics, Systematic Theology and New Testament Studies. In December of 2006, Pastor McClue was elected as pastor of the Mt. Carmel B.C. He serves as the General Secretary of the Baptist Pastor Conference (Dr. Robert Myers, Sr. Moderator). He is an active member of the Freedmen Baptist General Association. Presently, serves as the President of the New St. John Missionary Baptist Association.
Louis “Jack” Ward
Louis “Jack” Ward is a native New Orleanian who manages a landscaping business and works full time at The Ubuntu Village mentoring young people. He served time for more than three decades at correctional facilities across Louisiana since he was twelve years old. He served as inmate counsel in the law library at Angola State Penitentiary and returned home in 2012. Louis serves a Board Member for the Re-Entry Mediation Institute of Louisiana.
Julie Griff has served as the Director of the New Orleans Community-Police Mediation Program (CPMP), a program of the Office of the Independent Police Monitor since October 2017. She first began working with the CPMP in 2014, first as a volunteer and then as a mediator and as a contractor assisting with program operations. The program provides opportunities for community members and police officers to have facilitated face-to-face dialogues to be heard, build understanding, and resolve conflict they’ve had in their interactions with each other. In addition to her mediation work, Jules is a facilitator and trainer of Restorative Approaches and has worked with the Center for Restorative Approaches, providing conflict resolution in New Orleans schools and working to intervene in the school-to-prison pipeline.
Previously, Jules’ work has encompassed issues regarding public health, human rights, and community education. She worked for four years for Breakthrough, a human rights organization that uses art and media to raise awareness on women’s rights, HIV/AIDS, immigrant rights, and racial justice in the US and India. She served as Program Director for the HeartRescue Project in Philadelphia and has worked on issues of food security and senior health at the The Elderly Project and Santropol Roulant in Montreal. She is a co-founder of the MoBo Bicycle Co-op, a community bicycle education project in Cincinnati. Jules received a BA in history and humanistic studies from McGill University in Montreal. Jules serves a Board Member and Treasurer for the Re-Entry Mediation Institute of Louisiana.
A Louisiana native, Karron Williams has been serving the greater New Orleans area community for many years. Since 2017, Mrs. Williams has served as a professionally-trained mediator at the Independent Police Mediation for the City of New Orleans. She has been employed with The Institute for Networking Community Service since 2016. Currently, she is studying social work at Walden University to equip herself with the education needed to
give renewed hope and quality service to those in need. Mrs. Williams has been concentrating all of her efforts towards providing better options for the mentally-ill, distressed, and disadvantaged members of our community for a long time.
A native of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Ian Honore' graduated with his B.A. in Business management and M.B.A from the University of Phoenix, Baton Rouge Campus. He began his leadership career as Student Government President at the University of Phoenix. As president, Ian engaged his fellow students in the political process through streamlining the organization's operations and bylaws, increasing student participation and utilization of campus resources, and encouraging his fellow constituents to develop a love for lifelong learning. Ian is currently one of Brown and Root's up and coming "blue collar" leaders working as a supervisor of the TSE Unit. The effects of poverty, poor educational systems, and societal challenges are evident in the diverse workforce that Ian manages on a daily basis. Ian has a passion for mentorship and teaching others through real life experiences. He applies his skills and abilities to guide his co-workers in making good choices and taking active roles in the decision-making processes that affect their families and communities.
Lisa Ellis is a community servant, advocate for criminal justice reform, and a businesswoman. She is the lead facilitator of the Participatory Defense Movement New Orleans (PDMNola) Hub. PDMNola provides assistance to individuals facing prosecution by working with the family members of the defendant to positively affect the outcome a criminal case. Through the PDMNola platform Ms. Ellis encourages community and family support members to become informed about the criminal court proceedings, the rights of the accused, protecting those rights and holding court officials accountable if these rights are violated. PDMNola seeks to properly shift the power of the system back to the citizens it affects. The guiding principles of PDMNola is family and community strength with an overall goal of PDMNola is to influence systemic change to ultimately help end mass incarceration.
Currently, Ms. Ellis is employed as the Business Manager at a Behavioral Health Outpatient Clinic. She supervises over a dozen Mental Health Professionals and three (3) licensed Mental Health Professionals. She coordinates the daily activities of two offices which provides services to clients in numerous parishes. She also is a liaison between her offices and health care providers to ensure clients in her underserved community continue to receive adequate mental health services.
She also volunteers her time as a board member of the Rich Family Ministries. Her duties focus on finding innovative ways to shine light on the inequalities and injustices experienced by people in impoverished communities. Her goal is to see Mental Health decriminalized and her work there is a reflection of her passionate beliefs of equal justice for everyone.
With over twenty-five years of Accounting, Management, and Consulting services, she has provided accounting services, billing support, and tax prep for businesses and individuals. Her educational background includes a B.A. in Accounting and her post graduate studies are to be completed in December 2020 with an M.B.A., with a concentration in accounting.