The Vera Institute of Justice is thrilled to announce the third Corrections Education Leadership Academy (CELA) cohort.

Launched in 2021 with the support of Ascendium Education Group, CELA is an annual leadership academy for current and future state corrections education leaders. Over the course of the yearlong program, members learn best practices in the delivery of education in prison, expand their professional networks, and build the policy and program development skills necessary to create and drive equitable, high-quality postsecondary educational programs in prisons.

The members of the 2023–2024 CELA cohort are:

  • Michael A. Leach, Second Chance Pell Director, Southeast Arkansas College
  • Bernard Avery, Postsecondary Program Manager, Pennsylvania Department of Corrections
  • James Barron, Postsecondary Coordinator, Texas Department of Criminal Justice
  • Ashley Bass, Programs Manager, New Mexico Department of Corrections
  • Eliza Cornejo, Prison Education Program Director, Goucher College, Maryland
  • Jeana Ely, Superintendent of Schools, Oklahoma Department of Corrections
  • Brian Fauver, Educational Director, Utah Department of Corrections
  • Christopher Gleason, Academic Director, Georgia Coalition for Higher Education in Prison
  • Mary Haynes, Manager of Continuing Education, Massachusetts Department of Corrections
  • Sheila Hoffman, Senior Project and Change Manager, Minnesota Department of Corrections
  • Ashley Koonce, College and Career Specialist, Windham School District, Texas
  • Steve Meadows, Branch Manager CTE, Kentucky Department of Corrections
  • Brooke Wheeler, Assistant Superintendent, North Carolina Department of Corrections
  • Lashetta Wilder, Director of Education and Career Services, Mississippi Department of Corrections
  • Tracy Williams, Reentry Specialist, Lee College, Texas
  • Kevin Windhauser, Director, Washington University, Missouri

Vera welcomes the 2023–2024 cohort and looks forward to exploring ways members can improve and transform the delivery of college programs in prison.

Learn more about our previous CELA cohorts: