skip to content


Brennan Center for Justice Conversation Series Presents: A Conversation with James R. "Chip" Coldren, Jr., Ph.D., President and Charlie Frasno, Director of Prisons and Jails Program at the John Howard Association

Thursday, October 28, 2004

  • The Brennan Center

Thursday, November 4th at 12:30pm

Title: "Prison Reform--Chicago Style"

There is no CLE credit for this talk.

NOTE: This conversation will commence at ** 12:30pm ** and run til 2:00.
Please arrive by 12:20pm to find seats and feel free to bring your lunch with you.

The John Howard Association ("JHA"), based in Chicago, IL is a 103 year-old non-profit organization dedicated to monitoring and improving the conditions of confinement in prisons and jails, as well as to fair, humane, and effective sentencing, correctional, and criminal justice policies.

Prior to joining JHA Dr. Coldren served in several capacities at the University of Illinois at Chicago -- Director of the Center for Research in Law and Justice and of the Institute for Public Safety Partnerships. He also served as Deputy Director with the Project on Human Development in Chicago Neighborhoods, a longitudinal prevention-oriented research project of the Harvard University School of Public Health and for seven years as Director of Research for the Justice Research and Statistics Association (JRSA) in Washington, DC.

Dr. Coldren began his professional career in Chicago, where he worked for seven years with the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority, developing its data quality control program and conducting research in the areas of pretrial processing and repeat offenders. He went on to become the Director of Research and Computer System Development at Patuxent Institution in Maryland, a maximum security, treatment-oriented prison, and he published a book, Patuxent Institution: An American Experiment in Corrections (2004), about this unique correctional institution. Dr. Coldren holds a Master and Doctorate in Sociology from the University of Chicago.

Charles Fasano is Director of the Prisons and Jails Program of the John Howard Association. Since 1988, he has been responsible for monitoring conditions throughout the Illinois Department of Corrections (28 adult prisons, 3 boot camps, and 8 juvenile facilities), the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center, the Cook County Department of Corrections (CCDOC), which JHA monitors for the U. S. District Court in a class-action lawsuit regarding crowding and conditions of confinement that began in 1974, and other correctional facilities. Mr. Fasano also serves as a court-appointed expert in a federal class-action suit regarding mental health care at CCDOC.

Other professional experience includes: two years as Director of Accreditation for the National Commission on Correctional Health Care, inspecting jails, prisons, and juvenile facilities in more than 20 states; and, seven years as Director of Human Services at the Cook County Department of Corrections. Mr. Fasano is an Adjunct Lecturer in the Department of Criminal Justice at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from The University of Chicago and a Master of Arts in Criminal Justice from the School of Criminal Justice of the State University of New York at Albany.

RSVP to, as space is limited.

Pro Bono and legal aid attorney resources - Pro Bono Net
Legal info for the public