One-in-three Americans, 70 million, currently has an arrest and/or conviction record, and by the year 2030, that number is expected to be 100 million. When we look at the future of technology, we must begin fostering honest conversations regarding the role of innovation and data. Whether this be helping individuals with records move closer to the core of society or keeping them perpetually locked out of opportunity. In this discussion, we will explore the tension between advancing with future trends and maintaining a commitment to ensure that one-third of the population is included in the design of digital products and services. Participants will learn from a mother-and-daughter cofounding team with lived experience. Active dialogue is encouraged.
Laurin Leonard is Executive Director of Mission: Launch and a Co-Founder of R3 Score. She and her mother, Teresa Hodge, started Mission: Launch as a result of their lived experience with mass incarceration. Their business and leadership development accelerator for entrepreneurs living with criminal convictions, LaunchPad, has supported the formation of worker-owned cooperatives, sole proprietorships, and limited liability corporations throughout Maryland and Washington, D.C. region. This work led them to be named "Foot Soldiers of the Week" (November 9, 2015) on MSNBC's Melissa Harris-Perry show.
R3 Score was birthed out of LaunchPad as Laurin and Teresa discovered the need for helping entrepreneurs navigate around a standard background check, especially when seeking financial products and services.
Laurin is a graduate of Old Dominion University and The Johns Hopkins University Carey Business School and a proud member of various fellowships and communities.
Teresa Hodge is the Co-Founder and CEO of R3 Score Technologies, Inc. and is committed to reducing the harm prison causes to individuals and their families. After completing a seventy-month federal prison sentence, she co-founded Mission: Launch, Inc. with her daughter Laurin Leonard (Hodge). She is a 2018- 2020 Echoing Green Fellow and 2017–2018 Unlocked Futures inaugural cohort member for the tech intervention R3 Score. She was named a 2015–2016 Open Society Soros Justice Advocacy Fellow. Her innovative approach to criminal justice advocacy has led to national recognition. She presented twice at SXSW (2016 and 2017) and is a 2017 Dewey Winburne SXSW Community Service Award recipient. As well as a 2015-2016 alumna of JustleadershipUSA's Leading with Convictions inaugural cohort.
Teresa's TEDx Talk, "We've Made Coming Home Too Hard," highlights the impact of personal bias and social stigma on formerly incarcerated people and points to why recidivism rates are so high in America.