Kelsie Chesnut

Kelsie Chesnut is a research associate with the Center on Sentencing and Corrections. She conducts research as part of the Unlocking Potential project, where she works on expanding access to postsecondary education for people in prison. She also works with Vera’s Advancing Transgender Justice project, a collaborative initiative with Black & Pink that aims to understand and center the experiences of incarcerated transgender people.

Kelsie specializes in qualitative research, and has experience conducting in-depth interviews with incarcerated individuals in solitary confinement units in Washington State prisons, incarcerated individuals in the Los Angeles County Jail system, and gang-involved residents of Southern California. Originally from the Bay Area, Kelsie holds a BA in sociology and criminal justice from San Francisco State University; an MA in social ecology; and a PhD in criminology, law, and society from the University of California, Irvine.