I moved to California in 1999 with dreams of getting in the film business. I found early and long lasting success in this field. But it was in 2004 when I attended a creative writing class for incarcerated youth, which led me to my life’s passion and work. I have spent the last 16 years working with youth in the criminal justice system, and founded The Anti-Recidivism Coalition in 2013. I most recently produced the Warner Bros film, JUST MERCY.
Several years ago my heart was drawn to amazing organizations doing prison ministry and God’s command to visit those in prison. Eventually I was led to Oregon. While there, I met with Oregon prison officials, some members of the legislature and other citizens whose common bond was to give hope and purpose to men and woman in the Oregon prison system.
Several months ago I met Judge Tom Kohl who is the founder and executive director of Paid in Full Oregon (PiFO). Since then I have learned more about the mission and vision of PiFO to change the culture of the Oregon prison system from the inside out. This change will be possible for through a biblically based 4 year college degree program offered by Corban University. The potential for changed lives is truly amazing, and has my full support.
We all have the ability to profoundly impact and touch lives using the word of
God and that’s exactly what’s happening within the Oregon prison system. Paid In
Full Oregon provides inmates the opportunity to wholly transform their lives, as
well as the lives of those amongst them. These changes will have enduring effects
on generations to come, both institutionally and in communities as these men
reemerge as spiritual leaders.
“I have already seen proof that this program model can create deep, lasting change in prison culture through the promotion of moral rehabilitation. Judge Kohl and the PiFO team have worked tirelessly to ensure this degree program was tailored to address the needs of incarcerated students. I am excited to see the change that will inevitably take place within Oregon’s prison system!”
“An education not only affects the life of an inmate, but everyone else around them – prison staff, fellow inmates and their families. Paid in Full Oregon will allow our inmates to return to their communities with a college degree, hope for the future and the motivation to become a contributor to the common good.”
“There’s no transformational education program anything like PiFO, and what it is about to do for the inmates in our Oregon prison system. Transforming the lives of inmates returning to our communities, along with the ability to earn a college degree and mentor peers while still incarcerated, is an honest win-win.”
“Tom Kohl has a gripping personal story and a deep conviction about helping inmates grow spiritually and become leaders with character. This is an example of practical compassion that gives hope.”
“I believe Paid in Full Oregon, in partnership with Corban University, can transform our prison system by developing leaders with character and spiritual maturity.”
“I have personally witnessed the powerful effect of inmates being trained in God’s Word for the purpose of ministering to others. Not only have the hearts of men been changed, but the prison system itself has been revolutionized!”