We are a student organization shedding light on issues involving mass incarceration and dismantling the carceral state.
Cary Holley and Ayanna Coleman (not pictured) — Co-Presidents
Cary joined BARS after finding out about the systematic oppression in our criminal justice system. She hopes that BARS will be able make an impact on the criminal justice system in Philadelphia through bringing awareness to inequality and volunteering for local nonprofits.
Jordan Andrews — Vice President
Jordan is a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences studying Political Science, French, and Public Policy. She joined BARS to help build a forum for discussion about criminal justice issues on campus. Through BARS, Jordan hopes to use her communications role to broaden the conversations around mass incarceration and individual incarcerated people, focusing on the aspect of human dignity and thereby putting pressure on lawmakers and the justice system.
Karen Kim — Treasurer
Karen Kim serves as the treasurer for BARS. She is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences majoring in Africana studies. Born and raised in Hunting Park, North Philly, Karen joined BARS because it gave her a space to have both personal and academic discussions surrounding the criminal justice system. Her favorite hobbies are making music, painting, crocheting, and cooking.
Jenna Liu — Political Chair
Jenna is a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences studying PPE and hoping to pursue law after graduation. She first became involved with criminal justice issues as a student reporter interviewing victims of Missouri’s oppressive drug policies. She is excited to continue this work with BARS and hopes that the space can facilitate an important discourse at Penn about the need for change in the system.
Greer Bizzel-Hatcher — Director of Dialogue
Greer is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences majoring in Psychology and minoring in Law and Society. In addition to her work in BARS, Greer is the Co-Director of Professional Development for the Black Pre-Law Association, as well as an undergraduate fellow for the Center for Neuroscience and Society. Off campus, Greer enjoys her time as a community outreach librarian promoting childhood literacy and academic mentoring in West Philadelphia public schools and looks forward to researching with the Penn Child Development Labs this year. After graduating from Penn, she hopes to continue her engagement of criminal justice and education reform by pursuing a joint JD/PhD in Psychology in order to explore the causes, effects, and solutions of these issues using a much-needed interdisciplinary perspective.
Tatiana Johnson — External Affairs Chair
Tatiana is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences studying History and Sociology. She joined BARS as a freshman because she felt like the organization was doing important work in raising awareness, facilitating discussions, and providing support for organizations in West Philly. As BARS’ External Affairs Chair, she is looking forward to maintaining relationships with organizations on and off campus and collaborating on future events.
Kelly Porter — Communications Director
Kelly is a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences studying Criminology with minors in Biological Basis of Behavior (neuroscience), Psychology, and Africana Studies. She currently interns at the Pennsylvania Prison Society, in which she corresponds with incarcerated Pennsylvanians to advocate for humane treatment. She became involved in BARS as a means to further help empower the incarcerated population and to discuss criminal justice reform with her peers.
Karen Kim, Carson Eckhard, Morgan Smalls, and Shamari Harrington (not pictured) — Community Engagement Committee
Carson Eckhard is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences studying History and English with a minor in Urban Studies. Originally from Florida, Carson has been passionate about criminal justice reform since she was a high school student. As Community Engagement Director for BARS, Carson works to organize service opportunities and connect with various likeminded organizations on and off campus.
Morgan is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences studying Criminology. She has a passion for advocating for those who have limited voices in our society. She joined BARS apart of the Community Engagement team because she felt that as a Philadelphia native, she has a responsibility to advocate for those she most closely identifies with while also allowing the community’s voice to be heard on campus. She hopes that dialogue and communication amongst various groups will further create a sense of empathy and understanding that will ultimately result in criminal justice reform.
Chinaechelum Vincent and Srinidhi Ramakrishna – BARS Publication Team
Naeche is a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences. Once Naeche’s eyes were opened to the truths and horrors of what is mass incarceration, it was something she couldn’t stay away from. When a system is working against so many people in society, she believes that we must fight back. Through BARS, she has a platform to help those affected, along with many like-minded and driven individuals with the same goal. It’s time to end the age of mass incarceration and enter an era of education, rehabilitation, and liberation.
Srinidhi is a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences studying Political Science. She joined BARS to fight for radical transformation in the criminal justice system as a student. She also hopes to use the publication to spread awareness and spark conversations relevant to justice reform in order to expand the coalition of people advocating for change.
Michael Williams — Social Chair
Michael is a Junior in the College of Arts and Sciences majoring in Political Science with a concentration in international relations and minoring in Africana Studies and Latin American & Latino studies. He hopes to continue his criminal justice reform advocacy after graduating, and also focus on immigration reform and LGBTQ+ rights. He is currently a public policy intern at the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.