Jesse Vasquez found a passion for the written word while spending nearly 20 years behind bars. As a troubled teen, Jesse found himself in and out of juvenile hall. He then landed in prison at 17 with two life sentences. It was there that he learned to read and write, and in August 2018 he became the editor-in-chief of the San Quentin News, a position he held until he was granted parole in 2019.
Now Jesse is the Director of Development of the Friends of San Quentin News, a non-profit empowering incarcerated people to build and run their own media platforms. Chris and Coss talk with Jesse about the importance of education, rehabilitation and access to journalism.
To learn more about the San Quentin News, be sure to check out https://sanquentinnews.com/
You can also visit Forward This Productions, an organization that allows the incarcerated to share their narrative through film and digital video.
Preview for next week: Chris and Coss sit down with music executive Jason Flom, who describes himself as an "obsessive advocate" for first offenders and those wrongfully convicted.