White House Ignores Parole Board Chairman On Prison Reform; He’s Leaving


One person who would be expected to be at the table for high-level strategizing on the issue of prison reform is the chairman of the U.S. Parole Commission, former Washington, D.C., police chief Isaac Fulwood. The Washington Post says that Fulwood, who's leaving the post this week after nearly six years as chairman, has yet to meet President Obama or have a one-on-one meeting with Attorney General Eric Holder, whose centerpiece initiative has been “smart on crime” prison reform.

“It is with bittersweet sorrow that I have decided to retire,” Fulwood wrote to Obama on Jan.­ 8. “I have made this decision based on personal health challenges and the fact that the (U.S. Justice) department has not been as supportive over the years as they should have been,” citing staffing, funding and attention to issues of prison reform. In 2013, well before Ferguson, Cleveland, Staten Island and other troubling law enforcement incidents, Fulwood wrote to Obama suggesting that the Justice Department “lead a dialogue with law enforcement about racial profiling,” an issue he has long been concerned with during his decades of work in law enforcement. He got no response. Not even a robo-signed “Thanks for your letter.”

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