Natalie Holbrook, Program Director, is an advocate and activist working to disrupt the paradigm of punishment in MI. She has worked for the American Friends Service Committee’s Michigan Criminal Justice program for the last 16 years advocating for and with people held in Michigan’s prisons around a variety of issues including access to adequate health care and mental health care, general conditions of confinement, parole related issues, LGBTQ issues, abuse and neglect, solitary confinement and other problems and concerns.
Individual advocacy directly informs AFSC’s larger systemic change work. Natalie co-founded the Good Neighbor Project—a co-mentorship and cultural change initiative for men and women serving life and long indeterminate sentences and community members. She has an MA in Education from Eastern Michigan University and has enjoyed teaching community college classes as well as participating as a guest lecturer at local universities. In partnership with men at Kinross prison, Natalie developed a Personal Enrichment and Parole Readiness: Peer lead class for people serving long time. More recently, she has worked with JustLeadership USA’s 2018 and 2019 Fellows in trainings around the intersections of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer people and the criminal justice system.