Celebrity Chef Jeff Henderson and Activist Randall Robinson To Discuss Smarter Prison Policies in Harlem on Friday, September 23rd

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Hue-Man Bookstore Event in Harlem on the Eve of the Think Outside the Cell Symposium at Riverside Church Featuring Newark Mayor Cory Booker and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringerh

Celebrity Chef Jeff Henderson was selling cocaine at age 19. During his 10 years in prison, he discovered a passion for cooking. The best-selling author and executive chef is about to launch his own show on the Food Network next month.

Author of the acclaimed new novel, Makeda, and founder of the advocacy organization TransAfrica, Randall Robinson has spent a career promoting enlightened, constructive policies toward Africa and the Caribbean.

The two men join Sheila Rule, former New York Times journalist and co-founder of the Think Outside the Cell Foundation, for the fourth in a series of standing-room-only, heart wrenching discussions about the human and financial costs of prison at the Hue-Man Bookstore in Harlem (2319 Frederick Douglass Boulevard between 124th and 125th Streets) at 6 p.m. on Friday, September 23, 2011.

"Always more than a bookstore, Hue-Man represents that place where meaningful dialogue about issues that challenge urban communities can be explored,” said Hue-Man Bookstore owner Marva Allen. “Often times, the solutions to what seem like insurmountable social problems can be found by exchanging ideas between experts and those most affected. We are excited and honored to partner with Sheila Rule to bring these most current and urgent issues to the table."

The Hue-Man Bookstore series has featured several authors whose essays are featured in the Think Outside the Cell Foundation’s anthologies that focus on the experiences of the incarcerated, the formerly incarcerated and their loved ones. The topics will be explored in depth on Saturday, September 24th, at a day-long, free symposium at Riverside Church.

Expected to draw more than 1000 people, “Think Outside the Cell: A New Day, A New Way” will feature Newark Mayor Cory Booker, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and 60 Minutes Correspondent Byron Pitts.

Said Sheila Rule, “More than 730,000 men and women will be released from prison this year. When they return home, the shadow of their incarceration typically follows, limiting their ability to find jobs, housing and to reintegrate with their families and communities. The Riverside Church symposium will issue a call to action to challenge and end the stigma which the incarcerated and their families face.”

The symposium is being co-sponsored by the Ford Foundation, The Fortune Society’s David Rothenberg Center for Public Policy, College & Community Fellowship, the Riverside Church Prison Ministry and the Office of the Manhattan Borough President.

Other speakers include authors Michelle Alexander, Randall Robinson, Terrie M. Williams and Tom Burrell as well as Rossana Rosado, the publisher of El Diario, Jeremy Travis, president of John Jay College and Dr. Khalil Muhammad, director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. Their panel discussions will focus on the stigma of incarceration, failed policies that have made the United States the world’s leading jailer, and new ways that communities can better serve a population that struggles to “reintegrate” into society.

Riverside Church is located at West 120th Street and Riverside Drive. Doors will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Breakfast and lunch will be provided.

To register, visit http://www.thinkoutsidethecell.org.


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