THE BEST OF: The following article, published on February 5,2012, describes a newly published book, “How Information Matters”, by Professor Kathleen Hale of Auburn University and published by Georgetown University Press in 2011, which singles out NADCP as the best among non-profit organizations in Washington D.C.
Professor Hale’s analysis describes NADCP as the “Champion” Non-Profit Organization in its field. What does it have to do with reentry courts and court-based reentry systems. The answer is that it does and it doesn’t.
It describes the National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP) as the best among extraordinary organizations; whose structure, initiatives, strategies, and planning define excellence in the non-profit world. And I cannot agree more. I was there at the beginning of drug courts, as a drug court judge, and am still laboring in the fields, working to fulfill a vision that began for me, as first chair and then founding president of NADCP. In the beginning, we created the “Ten Key Components” and Drug Court Mentor Sites, and planned NADCP’s projects, initiatives and strategies; so I know that my fellow drug court pioneers feel as proud as I am of our accomplishments.
And those who came after us have truly done a superb job, in expanding drug courts and its progeny, problem-solving courts across the nation and around the world. They have built amazing public support for our “Champion” that has translated into much needed funding, and created wonderful new programs such as Veteran’s Courts, which thankfully are there to assist our Veterans in their time of need.
For me, it’s difficult to accept that my quest, the establishment of court-based reentry systems, that can staunch the flow of lives into our prisons, and salvage those that return broken, remains out of reach. I for one, salute all who have worked on our great labor of love, NADCP. But I long for this book’s sequel, the one that shows how we captured the holly grail of criminal justice, and achieved true prison reform through a partnership of the three C’s; Community, Corrections, and the Courts.