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Introducing Melissa Ludin, EXPO Fox Valley Organizer

Melissa LudinEXPO (Ex-Incarcerated People Organizing, a project of WISDOM) works to end mass incarceration, eliminate all forms of structural discrimination against formerly incarcerated people, and restore formerly incarcerated people to full participation in the life of our communities. Previously imprisoned women and men lead EXPO, which has active chapters in Milwaukee, Madison, and Eau Claire and is developing chapters in Racine, Kenosha, Beloit, Green Bay, the Fox Cities, and Wausau. Melissa Ludin is the new EXPO organizer in the Fox Cities. She works closely with ESTHER and its Prison Reform Task Force, as well as providing state-wide support.

Here is how Melissa describes herself and her work:

I am very excited to take on the Lead Organizer position for Ex-incarcerated People Organizing (EXPO) in the Fox Valley. I have been a leader and a board member of the organization since May 2016. As a formerly incarcerated woman, I lead with an unrelenting passion for criminal justice reform and reentry peer support. My first-hand experience of leadership and peer support started while I was incarcerated more than 11 years ago. Once incarcerated, I quickly became a leader by galvanizing women from extremely diverse backgrounds to open up about their paths and learn from each other. My goal is to build trust and provide support. After my release in 2007, I held true to my mission and continue to provide peer support to women who are still incarcerated or have been released.

My goal as your community organizer is to build relationships and to motivate and empower formerly incarcerated men and women, as well as their families. I am also determined to change the narrative and biases of formerly incarcerated men and women and strive to see our criminal justice system change from a one of punishment to one that is restorative.

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