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A woman of conviction drives change.

Syrita Steib-Martin’s college application was rejected because she checked “yes” when asked if she had a criminal history.Mark Ballard, “Ban the Box for College Applications Heads to Governor’s Desk,” The Advocate, June 6, 2017. Today, Steib-Martin is a lab supervisor at Touro Infirmary in New Orleans. “Had I not been allowed to get an education, life wouldn’t have become better for me,” she says.Mark Ballard, “Ban the Box for College Applications Heads to Governor’s Desk,” The Advocate, June 6, 2017. Steib-Martin was a driving force behind the passage of Louisiana’s law barring public universities from asking about past convictions—the first such law in the nation.Mark Ballard, “Ban the Box for College Applications Heads to Governor’s Desk,” The Advocate, June 6, 2017; and Louisiana HB 688 (2017).