State Prison Directors Honor Koch’s Holden for Justice Reform ‘Leadership’

Print More
Mark Holden

Mark Holden. Photo by John Ramsey/TCR

State prison directors have honored Mark Holden of Koch Industries for his “extraordinary and consistent leadership on criminal justice reform.”

The Association of State Correctional Administrators (ASCA) gave Holden its National Leadership Award at a gathering this week in Washington, D.C.

The organization said Holden’s efforts helped win congressional passage of the First Step Act, which was signed by President Trump in December.

“Your support, and that of other key conservative thought leaders, was instrumental in gaining the support of the White House, which helped get the bill over the finish line,” the prison directors told Holden. The group also cited Holden’s backing for “broader criminal justice reform efforts, including Second Chances for people leaving prison and state reform efforts.”

Accepting the honor, Holden said, “We’ve got to accelerate the reforms,” expressing the hope that Congress will pass legislation to expand the First Step Act. Also at the prison group’s session, Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA), who has been a congressional leader on justice reform, said that lawmakers are “missing opportunities” to advance reforms.

“We know what reduces crime and save money,” Scott said. He called on colleagues to abandon trying to fight crime with “slogans and sound bites.” ASCA is led this year by John Wetzel, Pennsylvania’s corrections secretary. The vice president is Oregon correction director Colette Peters.

2 thoughts on “State Prison Directors Honor Koch’s Holden for Justice Reform ‘Leadership’

  1. This is a very well-deserved honor. The fact that correctional administrators are appreciating and valuing criminal justice system reforms underscores the fact that criminal justice system reforms do not pit public safety against compassion and humane treatment. Correctional administrators are people we entrust with thoughtfully considering what will make our communities safest. Evidence-based criminal justice systems reform improve public safety and are also compassionate and humane. They also ensure that scarce public resources are used wisely.

    I very much agree with Mr. Holden that implementing evidence-based and humane reforms should be accelerated. There is a great deal of work still to be done, but the work of so many people in coming together thus far and accomplishing so much for our country has been truly incredible and inspiring.

  2. Well it’s a start. We have a few starts. My post is concerning the state prison system. Yes, the need for acceleration of reform can not be too soon. We need it now. Our loved ones who are incarcerated with excessive lengthy sentences, due to their state laws, are the ones who need reform on laws. Why does our incarcerated, get a longer sentence just because they have had a past felony on their history? They did their time. Now another one, and non violent crime gives 25 to life. Mass incarceration needs to stop. Private prisons need to stop. Money made off incarcerated persons, is morally wrong. Alternatives for incarceration needs to stop!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *