Michelle Alexander, author of the bestseller The New Jim Crow, will speak on a plenary about the war on drugs, mass incarceration and criminal justice.
This award honors citizens who make democracy work in the difficult area of drug law and policy reform.
Kathie Kane-Willis began her advocacy work in 1990 with ACT-UP Chicago. In 2005, she co-founded the Illinois Consortium on Drug Policy, a policy research institute housed at Roosevelt University. Kathie advanced several harm reduction policies in the Midwest, including 911 Good Samaritan laws, naloxone access laws, ensuring methadone access for Medicaid-eligible individuals, and bringing attention to drug-induced homicide laws. Kathie now serves as Director of Policy and Advocacy at the Chicago Urban League, where she continues to focus her work on racial justice issues, including disparities in marijuana possession arrests and the mass incarceration of people of color who use drugs.