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Sun, Mar

Empathy Innovators


Presented by: Rue Landau, Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations

1st Place: Kendra Brooks, IIRP, Parents United, WE Caucus, Opt Out Philly, Our Schools Our City, Action United. Kendra masterfully webs social justice issues to education and parent, and community engagement as a resource and factor in overcoming poverty. Kendra is by far one of the most significant civil rights leaders of our time. The fact that she is ours in Philadelphia is huge but she is received and valued in Chester, Tulsa, Chicago and many other urban cities across the country.

2nd Place: Lori Pompa, Founder and Director, The Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program. Lori created and implemented the Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program, an innovative experiential learning course that brings together incarcerated and campus-based college students for a full semester course inside a prison, jail or other correctional facility. She then created an international training institute through which 700 instructors from 250+ colleges in the U.S. and 9 other countries have attended a week-long course in this unique, transformational pedagogy. Lori has followed through on her passion to create deep, transformational learning experiences through extended dialogue across difference, involving diverse populations from prisons, campuses and other sectors of the community, and Inside-Out classes and workshops have reached more than 20,000 people on both sides of prison walls here and abroad.

3rd Place: Dr. Roy Hoffman. Dr. Hoffman expanded the city's death review teams to include the country's first ever comprehensive Homeless Death Review to look at the social factors leading to the deaths of homeless people in Philadelphia. The team studies any contact homeless decedents had with myriad agencies as a way of understanding how we can do more to help this most vulnerable population and make concrete recommendations to do so. Dr. Hoffman is passionate about his work in public health, often staying long after closing time to make sure he has done everything he can to assure that the most vulnerable among us are not written off, but that the study of their deaths helps ensure proper and timely resources are made available to this population.