Norway Partners

Per Sigurd Väge

International Advisor & Director | Kriminalomsorgsdirektoratet, Norway

Per Sigurd Våge is a director in the Correctional Service of Norway. Since graduating from law studies in 1984, he has been a professional practitioner in the governmental field of justice, in various roles as a prosecutor, judge, lawyer in the police, prison governor, and since 2001 the regional director in the Correctional Service. From 2019-21 he was stationed in the bilateral mission in Kyiv, Ukraine as an international expert in the Rule of Law, enhancing the Ukrainian probation service. In all leading roles of management, development, rule of law, and security he has been innovative and motivated to enhance the organization towards evidence-based methods and best practices. His priority and perspective have been strong on each individual person serving their sentences, in a measure of stability to the social contract of each government in office. Per Sigurd is a person with an optimistic and curious mindset in his professional and private life.

Elin Schie – Med hilsen

Fengselsleder | Indre Østfold fengsel

Elin started working in the correctional service in January 2007. She worked 10 years in
Oslo prison and moved to Eidsberg prison in February 2017, where they opened a brand
new facility in June 2017. Elin is in charge of the activities and all the departments in the
prison, both high and low security.

Norway Travel Team

Danielle Cooper

Associate Professor of Criminal Justice | Director of Research of Tow Youth Justice Institute |
University of New Haven

Dr. Cooper researches youths and young adults, juvenile justice
and delinquency prevention, criminological theory, and sex offending. In addition to
her work as a Professor and Researcher, she is also a Certified Prevention Professional
who works with nonprofits and community organizations as a prevention trainer and
evaluation consultant. Through her work in the community, she has collaborated with
key stakeholders, such as youth and their parents, law enforcement, mental health
professionals, and youth serving organizations.

Barbara Fair

Licensed Clinical Social Worker | Social Justice Activist

Ms. Fair work includes raising awareness of the destabilizing impact of incarceration
on children, families, and whole communities. Included in that work is demanding
accountability for state sanctioned violence occurring unchecked within police
departments and correctional facilities across Connecticut. Seeking the end of the ugly
history of America’s treatment of marginalized people by eliminating the use of
unnecessary chaining and shackling along with the dehumanizing and humiliating
practice of strip searching people without probable cause for doing so. After several
decades of doing this work she no longer believes these systems can be reformed
without acknowledging the foundation under which it was built.

Eulalia Garcia

District Administrator & Director | CT Department of Correction Programs and Treatment Division

District Administrator Garcia started her career with the Connecticut Department of Correction in 2005 as a Correctional Counselor. She earned her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Hartford in Criminal Justice and her Masters degree from Albertus Magnus College in Management and Organizational Leadership.
She was promoted to the rank of Counselor Supervisor at the Cheshire Correctional Institution in December of 2012. On the strength of her work performance in 2017 she was promoted to the rank of Deputy Warden assigned to the Manson Youth Institute. During her time at MYI, she was heavily involved with the JJPOC, Incarceration workgroup subcommittee, Taskforce to End Homelessness, and the Racial and Ethnic Diversion subcommittee. In April of 2020, she was promoted to the rank of Warden at the Willard-Cybulski Correctional Institution. The facility’s mission focuses – through a wide range of programming opportunities – on preparing inmates for successful reintegration into the community.

Robert Gillis

Former Director of Parole and Community Services

Mr. Gillis retired after 36 years of service to the Department of Correction. During the final 18 years of his career, he served as Warden at 3 different facilities and, finally, as Director of Parole and Community Services. He was until recently a member of the Steering Committee of Stop Solitary CT(SSCT). During the past two legislative sessions, the organization vigorously advocated the abolition of solitary punishment, establishment of an ombudsman, and the creation of an oversight body to review the operations of the DOC . Successful efforts were achieved by the passage of what has been termed the PROTECT ACT during the 2022 session of the General Assembly. Mr. Gillis also served as one of the editors and writers of a monograph sponsored by the Malta Justice Initiative titled The Justice Imperative: How Hyperincarceration Has Hijacked the American Dream.

Aileen Keays

Senior Project Director | Institute for Municipal and Regional Policy

Ms. Keays works closely with leaders of Connecticut’s criminal justice agencies,
community members, not-for-profits, advocates, and legislators to promote effective
public policy and practice through program development, research, consultation,
project management, program evaluation, consultation, technical assistance, and
training. Ms. Keays has managed the Institute’s Children with Incarcerated Parents
Initiative since 2008, overseeing several projects related to parental incarceration.
Under Ms. Keays’ leadership, the Initiative has provided supportive funding to serve
hundreds of Connecticut children with incarcerated parents, and to evaluate the effect
those interventions had on children. In addition to directing the CIP Initiative, Ms.
Keays has served on the Judicial Branch’s Access to Justice Commission and staffed the
Commission on Racial and Ethnic Disparity in the Criminal Justice System.

Brittany LaMarr

Project Manager | Tow Youth Justice Institute (Juvenile Justice Policy and Oversight Committee)

Brittany is a tireless advocate for human rights, youth justice, and legal policy reforms across state, national, and international levels. With a B.A. in Political Science from UConn, where she is also an MPP & J.D. Candidate. Brittany personifies the power of education as an alum of Yale Law School’s Access to Law Fellowship and a Frederic Bastiat Fellow of the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. She brings her unique blend of lived experience and scholarship to her many leadership roles, serving as: Assistant Director of the National Prison Debate League, Project Manager of the Juvenile Justice Policy and Oversight Committee with the Tow Youth Justice Institute, Smart Justice Leader with the ACLU of Connecticut, Justice Advisor with Connecticut Justice Alliance, and as a member of the New England Commission on the Future of Higher Education in Prison.

David McGuire

David J. McGuire joined the ACLU of Connecticut as a staff attorney in 2007 and served as its legislative and policy director from 2015 through 2016. In 2016, McGuire was chosen to lead the organization as its executive director. In his decade-plus with the ACLU-CT, McGuire has litigated cases to protect incarcerated people’s rights, separation of church, and state, and free speech rights. He also played a leading role in advocating for police accountability and successfully pressed for the passage of dozens of laws to protect civil rights and liberties. A past recipient of Connecticut Magazine’s “40 Under 40” award, McGuire also is the chair of the Connecticut Special Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights serves on the state’s Racial Profiling Prohibition Project Advisory Board, and is a member of the Commission on Racial and Ethnic Disparities in the Criminal Justice System. McGuire received his B.A. in history from Purdue University and graduated cum laude from Western New England University School of Law.

Robyn A. Porter

State Representative, 94th District

State Representative Robyn A. Porter has championed legislation that has provided fair wages and supportive workspaces for Connecticut’s labor force reformed the state’s criminal and juvenile justice systems, increased protections for domestic violence victims, advanced pay equity laws for women, and so much more. Rep. Porter is the House Chair of the Labor and Public Employees committee, is a member of both the Appropriations and Judiciary committees, and is co-chair of the Education Subcommittee on the Juvenile Justice Policy and Oversight Committee. She has authored and sponsored legislation that supports a more equitable judicial system in Connecticut. That legislation most recently, reforms occupational licensure for justice-impacted people, restores respect, dignity, and fairer treatment for incarcerated women creates a Hate Crimes Investigation Unit within the State Police, limits solitary confinement, establishes an office on gun violence prevention, continues to advance the body cameras program, police accountability, and Connecticut’s new Clean Slate laws.

Iliana Pujols​

Policy Director | Connecticut Justice Alliance

Iliana began her work with the Alliance in late 2017 as one of the founding members of the Justice Advisors. She played a critical role in recruiting, training, and supporting the Justice Advisors as well as determining the policies and practices of the organization’s work. Iliana currently serves as a member of the 2021 World Congress on Justice with Children Child and Youth Advisory Group. She is a frequent panelist for national organizations, speaking to her expertise around youth and young adult partnership and advocacy based on her personal experiences and professional success.

Trina Sexton

Warden, York Correctional Institution | Connecticut Department of Correction

Warden Sexton has worked for the CT Department of Correction for nearly 15 years and currently is the Warden at York CI, a correctional facility that serves incarcerated adult women, transgender males, transgender females, and female youth being adjudicated in the adult system. In alignment with the Agency’s mission to be leaders in progressive correctional practice, Sexton has implemented numerous specialized programs throughout her career to support reintegration, employment, women, veterans, emerging adults, and families impacted by incarceration. Her strategic plan for York CI includes a focus on staff wellness, development, and training as well as expansion of model practices focusing on rehabilitation, restorative justice, and human dignity.

Jacob Werblow

Professor, Curriculum & Instruction | Central Connecticut State University

Dr. Werblow has served as a U.S. Fulbright Scholar (Kyoto, Japan), Harber Fellow in Education at Wesleyan University. He is a certified school administrator, and was a public-school teacher in Los Angeles and San Francisco, CA. His research interests include: school equity, parent engagement, and prison reform. Jacob co-authored several research projects with the IMRP, including Life on Parole (LOP) Case Study: Measuring the Impact of The New York Times and Frontline’s Collaboration in Connecticut and Beyond (2019) and a Program Evaluability Study of Culinary Arts Programs in the Connecticut Department of Correction (2015).

Hope Metcalf

Executive Director, Orville H. Schell, Jr. Center for International Human Rights | Faculty at Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic | Yale University

From 2010 to 2014, Metcalf directed the Liman Program and co-taught the Liman Workshop and the Liman Project, an experiential course on criminal justice reform. Prior to that, Metcalf supervised the National Litigation Project of the Allard K. Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic, which was founded in 2002 to respond to rights violations arising out of U.S. counterterrorism policy. Metcalf’s teaching and research focus on the rights of people in various forms of detention, and she regularly consults with national and international organizations on those subjects. With her clinic students, Metcalf has co-counseled lawsuits before U.S. courts and international for a against the Bush and Obama administrations relating to the torture and indefinite detention of terrorism suspects. Through the Lowenstein Clinic, Metcalf and her students have investigated human rights violations in Connecticut, including solitary confinement, conditions on death row, and the criminalization of homelessness, and have supported local campaigns on those issues.

John Lucas

Director of Visual Content | Institute of Municipal and Regional Policy

Mr. Lucas has worked as a documentary photographer, visual artist and filmmaker for more than 25 years. His work has been exhibited in museums and galleries both nationally and internationally including the Brooklyn Art Museum, Cleveland Museum of Art, Redcat (Los Angeles), OK Harris Works of Art (NYC), The Smithsonian Museum (DC), Pulitzer Arts Foundation (MO), La Panaderia (Mexico City), Aeroplastics Contemporary, (Brussels) and Fieldgate Gallery (London). His work has appeared in print including the Atlantic Monthly, Art in America, Artforum, The New York Times and Vogue magazine.

Magnus Stark

Magnus Stark is a visual artist and a professional photographer born in Linköping, Sweden who lives and works in Miami, Florida.