Across the United States, more than 730,000 men and women will be released from prison this year. When they return home, the shadow of their incarceration typically follows, limiting their ability to find jobs and housing and reintegrate with their families and communities.

With over 1,000 participants and registrants, the foundation’s daylong free symposium, “Think Outside the Cell: A New Day, A New Way,” will present a series of thought-provoking ideas and discussions on Saturday, Sept. 24.

At the symposium, Newark Mayor Cory Booker will describe innovations in prisoner re-entry programs and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer will present alternative strategies for inner-city policing.

CNN anchor Soledad O’Brien, “60 Minutes” correspondent Byron Pitts, BET anchor Marc Lamont Hill and former CBS News correspondent Jacqueline Adams will speak, as will Joseph Robinson from his cell in New York’s Sullivan Correctional Facility. Robinson, a co-founder of the Think Outside the Cell Foundation, is serving a 25-to-life sentence for murder. He is eligible for release in 2017.

Other speakers include authors Michelle Alexander, Randall Robinson, Terrie M. Williams and Tom Burrell, as well as Rossana Rosado, the publisher of El Diario, Jeremy Travis, president of John Jay College, Dr. Khalil Gibran Muhammad, director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and celebrity chef Jeff Henderson.

The panels will focus on seldom discussed topics: the emotional and financial costs of prison, the stigma of incarceration, failed policies that have made the United States the world’s leading jailer and new ways communities can better serve a population that struggles to reintegrate into society.

Riverside Church is located at West 120th Street and Riverside Drive. Doors will be open from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and breakfast and lunch will be provided.

To register, visit