Skip to Content

Keynote Speakers

Baz Dreisinger, Ph.D.

Dr. Dreisinger is Associate Professor in the Department of English and Founder/Director of the Prison-to-College Pipeline at John Jay College of Criminal Justice/CUNY. She is the author of Near Black: White-to-Black Passing in American Culture (University of Massachusetts Press, 2008), and Incarceration Nations: A Journey to Justice in Prisons around the World (Other Press, 2016).

Together with Oscar-nominated filmmaker Peter Spirer, Professor Dreisinger produced and wrote the documentaries Black & Blue: Legends of the Hip-Hop Cop, which investigates the New York Police Department’s monitoring of the hip-hop industry, and Rhyme & Punishment, about hip-hop and the prison industrial complex. Professor Dreisinger is also a reporter for the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, and NPR.

Daniel McGowan

Daniel spent the last five and a half years in federal prison (much of it in a Communications Management Unit) after being convicted of arson and conspiracy charges related to events that occurred at the turn of the century. Daniel was the subject of the Oscar-nominated documentary film If a Tree Falls: A Story of the Earth Liberation Front. Currently, He works at a nonprofit focused on prison reform and is enjoying life back in his hometown with friends and family.

Joshua Allen

Joshua Allen is a black trans-feminine organizer and abolitionist whose work revolves around issues of race, gender and policing. Their work of coordinating direct actions, movement building and analyzing the intersections of race and gender have been featured in major news outlets such as CNN, MSNBC, BBC, and ABC. Joshua has been invited to workshop, keynote and organize at universities, conferences and within movements in countries across the world.