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Washington, D.C. and Houston, TX – Today, Arnold Ventures (AV) announced Kevin Ring, currently the President of FAMM (Families Against Mandatory Minimums), will join AV as the new Vice President of Criminal Justice Advocacy, a role that will help shape criminal justice reform legislative efforts on the Hill and in dozens of states across the country.

Ring, who has led FAMM since 2017, is a nationally known and highly regarded advocate and strategist.

Kevin Ring

He drove multi-million-dollar campaigns to pass sentencing reform legislation in Washington, D.C. and in states such as California, Florida, Oregon, and Tennessee. He has testified before legislative committees at the federal and state levels, and he regularly appears on national television and in major publications in support of measures to reduce incarceration safely, expand second chances, and make our communities safer. Most notably, he was a driving force behind the First Step Act, groundbreaking prison and sentencing reform legislation signed into law in 2018, which provided relief to more than 10,000 people serving unfairly long sentences in federal prison. 

I cannot imagine a more perfect fit for this role than Kevin Ring, who has been on the forefront of almost every major successful criminal justice reform effort for the past decade,” said James Williams, Executive Vice President of Advocacy at Arnold Ventures. As a formerly incarcerated person, Kevin understands how our broken justice system impacts every single American family. As an experienced campaign strategist, he has the vision to bring the right and the left together in support of data-driven legislation to make our justice system fairer and our communities safer. In his new role at Arnold Ventures, Kevin will have the resources and platform to scale-up this work, empower our longtime allies, and bring new voices to the movement.” 

Ring, who officially joins AV July 10th, will build and resource bipartisan coalitions at the federal and state levels to develop and drive evidence-based criminal justice reform policies and legislation.

I’m honored to join the talented team at Arnold Ventures, the center of gravity for evidence-based policy solutions in this country,” said Ring. As president of FAMM, an AV grantee, I experienced firsthand their commitment to criminal justice reforms that create safer communities and stronger families. I am so grateful for this opportunity to marry passionate advocacy to smart policy, and identify and support smart, energetic, and creative advocates from across the ideological spectrum. I can’t wait to get started.”

At AV, Ring will oversee a powerhouse team of dedicated and experienced advocates, including:

Alyson Clements: Director of Criminal Justice Advocacy (former Co-Director of the National Juvenile Justice Network)

John Koufos: Director of Criminal Justice Advocacy (former Executive Director of Taking Action for Good and National Director of Re-entry Initiatives for Right on Crime)

Destiny Carter: Manager of Criminal Justice Advocacy (former policy specialist for the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless)

Emily Mooney: Manager of Criminal Justice Advocacy (former Senior Policy Manager at REFORM Alliance and R‑Street resident fellow).

As a surprise to Kevin, his friends and allies across the political spectrum, as well as members of Congress and impacted family members, contributed to this video celebrating his announcement and sharing some of their favorite stories of working alongside Kevin to fix our broken justice system. A few messages to Kevin are excerpted below:

Senator Cory Booker (D‑NJ): Congratulations on this really important step, not just in your career, but for all of us who believe in issues of justice. This is an exciting and important step forward.”

Jeremy Travis, Executive Vice President of Criminal Justice at Arnold Ventures: I have worked for decades in the criminal justice reform movement, and Kevin Ring is one of the finest advocates I have come across. His outstanding leadership at FAMM and his compelling personal story make him the right person for this position, at a time when the movement is facing new challenges and opportunities. I look forward to seeing Kevin’s work to create a smarter justice system, and safer communities.”

Greg Newburn of Niskanen Center: I’m certain that Arnold Ventures could not have found a better person, and I know they couldn’t have found a better fit.” 

FAMM’s Matthew Charles, who served 21 years in federal prison before his release in 2019 due to passage of the First Step Act: Kevin has the best interests of others in mind and at heart. I believe it’s engrained in his soul and in his spirit.” 

Rabiah Burks, National Legal Aid and Defender Association: I appreciate Kevin for his ability to step beyond himself, to see the greater good, and to try something different.” 

Arnold Ventures is a philanthropy dedicated to tackling some of the most pressing problems in the United States. It is a team of more than 120 subject-matter experts headquartered in Houston with offices in New York and Washington, D.C. It works in four key issue areas: Criminal Justice, Education, Health, and Public Finance. Its work is guided by Evidence-Based Policy, Research, and Advocacy.

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Media Contact:

David Hebert