Wendy Jason, Founding Director
Wendy combines her background in restorative practices, mental health, and education with her passion for the arts to foster vibrant, inclusive, and nurturing communities that model and promote social justice. With 25 years of experience in social services, working in residential treatment, mental health centers, schools, shelters, prisons, and jails in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Florida, Alaska, New Mexico, Maryland, and DC, she understands the myriad challenges confronted by those most impacted by mass incarceration and the root causes of the injustices they face. Wendy is committed to supporting both individual and social change through cultivating relationships grounded in collaboration, trust, authenticity, empathy, and integrity.
Wendy received her BA in Sociology and Applied Social Relations from Eastern Connecticut State University, studied Transformative Language Arts at Goddard College, and completed her M.A. in Coexistence and Conflict through Brandeis University’s Alan B. Slifka Program in Intercommunal Coexistence. Her research included a focus on the intersection of the arts and peacebuilding, culminating in a field project built around creative writing, restorative practices, and peace education with incarcerated men and a thesis entitled As long as it comes from the heart: Imagining Coexistence and Nonviolence in a County Jail and Beyond. She has experience facilitating creative writing and conflict transformation workshops at the Bernalillo County Metropolitan Detention Center and within schools and youth organizations. She has co-taught courses on social justice and conflict transformation through Georgetown University’s Program on Justice and Peace, researched and reported on issues related to restorative justice and the arts for Change.org. Wendy served as the manager of the Prison Arts Coalition website for eight years.
Connect with Wendy at email@example.com
Jayme Epstein, Volunteer Coordinator
Jayme found JAC while looking for ways to contribute toward the transformation of the carceral system in the United States and now cherishes the opportunity to correspond with incarcerated artists and share their work with the broader public as a way to showcase their dignity, humanity and talent. Jayme practiced law for 12 years and then worked primarily for two non-profit organizations: first, as the volunteer coordinator and program director for Yachad, Inc., which recruits volunteers and builders to rehabilitate the homes of lower income Washington, D.C. residents; and second, as a language arts and social studies teacher at Academy of Hope Adult Public Charter School. Currently, she is the Volunteer Services Associate for Christ House, a medical respite facility for men experiencing homelessness in Washington, DC. When not working or volunteering with JAC, Jayme volunteers with political campaigns and with organizations doing anti-racist education and advocacy work. She is a member of the Tikkun Olam Commission and the Jews of Color and Allies Advisory Group of Reconstructing Judaism, and is the co-chair of the DC Leadership Council of Jews United for Justice.
Connect with Jayme at firstname.lastname@example.org
Cat Quinlan, Communications + Network Engagement
Connect with Cat at email@example.com
Hailey Lanford, Workshops + Networking Intern
Hailey Lanford is a junior at The George Washington University, majoring in English and double minoring in Journalism & Mass Communications and Linguistics. She previously attended Virginia Commonwealth University for a short amount of time before attending Northern Virginia Community College for the past two years. Hailey is one of two Workshop Interns for the Fall 2020 semester. She enjoys engaging with people through thoughtful conversation and is a passionate writer, focusing mainly on poetry and non-fiction works. Hailey hopes to go on to become a literary agent or work within a publishing house in some capacity. In her downtime, she loves to try new recipes, read books (her favorite is Bird By Bird by Anne Lamott), or go hiking on trails around the D.C. Metro area.
Hailey can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Molly Wooliver, Web Team Intern
Molly Wooliver grew up in Anchorage, Alaska with a family full of activists and dogs. She holds degrees in Psychology and Philosophy from Portland State University and has been working in Behavior Analysis and Intervention for individuals with cognitive disabilities for 7 years. Molly is a new intern working on the Web team this fall and hopes to use her love for art and the power it holds to create a space for disenfranchised artists to sell their art and start their own businesses.
Molly can be reached at email@example.com
Melissa Wang, Web Team Intern
Melissa Wang is a sophomore at Yale University from Seattle, WA, prospectively majoring in Political Science. She is an intern on the Web team this fall. Her passion for prison and police abolition drew her to JAC’s work, and she hopes to drive lasting social change through organizing in the future. Outside of school and work, Melissa enjoys making visual art, going to poetry readings, listening to Carly Rae Jepsen, and lifting weights.
Melissa can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Anna McGuire, Web Team Intern
Anna McGuire is a senior at Davidson College, majoring in Political Science and minoring in History. She is currently serving as a Web Intern for JAC. Originally from Cabin John, MD, Anna hopes to pursue a career supporting incarcerated populations and advocating for restorative justice. Anna is also passionate about the power of artistic expression and serves as the co-station manager for her campus radio station. In her free time, Anna loves cooking, watching stand-up comedy, going to concerts and spending time with her dogs.
Anna can be reached at email@example.com
Ava Dennis, ArtConnects Intern
Ava Dennis is a junior at American University studying Art History with a minor in Psychology with hopes of becoming a university professor. With her work at JAC as Communications Intern on the ArtConnects team, she strives to combine her passion for the arts with her social justice spirit, and advocate first hand for the ability for art to shape narratives, foster connections, and aid in creating tangible change. When she is not working, Ava is most likely playing rugby for American University, doing crossfit, painting, or adventuring outdoors with her friends.
Ava can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Isa Berliner, Web Team Intern
Isa Berliner is a sophomore at Harvard College double majoring in Art and the Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality. Originally from Culver City, California, Isa is passionate about social justice and the transformative power of art, and hopes to pursue a career in human rights advocacy. Isa is so excited to be joining the JAC community as an intern with the Web Team! In her free time she loves playing flute, making earrings, doing lighting design for shows, and getting lost in nature.
Isa can be reached at email@example.com
Nora Chapman, Workshops + Networking Intern
Nora Chapman is a current sophomore at Kenyon College from Seattle, Washington. She is majoring in Art History with a minor in English and Studio Art. As a visual artist, Nora has always been a believer in the importance of the arts, as well as advocacy work. She hopes to go into museum work and continue to try to make art more accessible to all. Outside of her internship at JAC, Nora is an associate at the art gallery on campus. She can also be found on her campus dance team, taking a long run through nature, painting, or drawing.
Nora can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Joslyn Lapinski, ArtConnects Intern
Joslyn is currently taking a gap year from her undergraduate studies in Psychology, Studio Arts, and the Administration of Justice. This year, she is at home in Baltimore County, MD working as an RBT for children with developmental disorders. She plans to pursue a career in Forensic Psychology, devoting her life to helping individuals involved in the criminal justice system get access to the support and resources they need and deserve. Having a passion for visual arts herself, Joslyn understands the powerful role creative expression can play in transforming a person’s life and mental health. She is very excited to continue harnessing this power through her work on the JAC Art Connects Team.
Joslyn can be reached at email@example.com