The Independent Commission on New York City Criminal Justice and Incarceration Reform seeks to help the City of New York move towards closing the jail complex on Rikers Island, improve the functioning of the criminal justice system, reduce the use of unnecessary incarceration, and encourage the development of state-of-the-art, borough-based jail facilities.
The Commission was convened at the request of New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and issued its evidence-based blueprint for improving New York City’s criminal justice system, A More Just New York City, in April 2017. Today, in partnership with other key organizations, the Commission continues to provide policymakers with the tools and roadmaps they need to implement its recommendations.
The Commission is chaired by former Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman and comprised of two dozen civic leaders, experts, and advocates from a variety of backgrounds, including law enforcement, academia, the judiciary, social services, advocacy groups, business, and those who have spent time behind bars.
Judge Jonathan Lippman (Chair)
Former Chief Judge of the State of New York and Chief Judge of the New York Court of Appeals, and Of Counsel at Latham & Watkins LLP
Richard M. Aborn
President of the Citizens Crime Commission of New York City
Director of the Center for Court Innovation
President and General Counsel of LatinoJustice PRLDEF
Hon. Matthew J. D’Emic
Presiding Judge of the Brooklyn Mental Health Court and Administrative Judge for Criminal Matters, Brooklyn Supreme Court
Mylan L. Denerstein
Partner at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Robert B. Fiske, Jr.
Senior Counsel at Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP and former United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York
Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of L&L MAG
Colvin W. Grannum
President and Chief Executive Officer of the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corp
Dr. Michael P. Jacobson
Executive Director of the CUNY Institute for State & Local Governance and Chairman of the Board of the New York City Criminal Justice Agency
Seymour W. James, Jr.
Attorney-in-Chief of The Legal Aid Society of New York
Hon. Judy Harris Kluger
Executive Director of Sanctuary For Families
Former Chief Operating Officer of the Rockefeller Foundation
Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of Exodus Transitional Community, Inc.
Ana L. Oliveira
President and Chief Executive Officer of The New York Women’s Foundation
Rocco A. Pozzi
Probation Commissioner, Westchester County Department of Probation and former Commissioner of the Westchester County Department of Correction
Clarence J. Robinson Professor of Criminology, Law and Society at George Mason University and former Assistant Attorney General in the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs
Board Member of the New York City Board of Corrections and Senior Vice President at The Fortune Society, Inc.
Hon. Jeanette Ruiz
Administrative Judge of the New York Family Court
Peter G. Samuels
Partner at Proskauer Rose LLP
Board Chair of the Center for New York City Neighborhoods
Dr. Alethea Taylor
Professor and Director of Internship Development, Hunter College School of Education - Department of Educational Foundations and Counseling
Vice President of Criminal Justice at the Laura and John Arnold Foundation. Former President of John Jay College of Criminal Justice and former Director of the National Institute of Justice
President and Director of the Vera Institute for Justice
President of the Ford Foundation
Kenneth H. Zimmerman
Distinguished Fellow of the Furman Center at NYU Law School and the former Director of U.S. Programs of the Open Society Foundations
Tyler Nims is Executive Director of the Independent Commission on New York City Criminal Justice and Incarceration Reform. Before joining the Commission, he was a litigator at Latham & Watkins LLP, served as a law clerk to US District Judge Raymond J. Dearie in the Eastern District of New York and Chief Justice Sandile Ngcobo of the South African Constitutional Court, and practiced civil rights litigation at the MacArthur Justice Center in Chicago.
Zachary Katznelson is Policy Director of the Independent Commission on New York City Criminal Justice and Incarceration Reform. He previously worked as an attorney at the Legal Aid Society’s Prisoners’ Rights Project, the Equal Justice Initiative, the British charity Reprieve, and the Prison Law Office. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife Isabel and their three young sons.
Misaël Syldor is Program Assistant at the Independent Commission on New York City Criminal Justice and Incarceration Reform. She was born and raised in New York City, and is a proud child of Haitian immigrants. She is a recent graduate of Oberlin College with a BA in Africana Studies and Politics.