Vivian Nixon

College and Community Fellowship
Executive Director

Key Topics: U.S. mass incarceration, Intersections of mass incarceration in the U.S. and race, gender, religion, education, and poverty, Social inequality, Racism, Role of religion in society.

Bio: Vivian Nixon is Executive Director of College and Community Fellowship (CCF), an organization committed to removing barriers to higher education for women with criminal record histories and their families. She developed a passion for these issues while working as a peer educator in the adult basic education program at Albion State Correctional Facility in New York.

Vivian is a Columbia University Community Scholar and has received multiple honors including the John Jay Medal for Justice, the Ascend Fellowship at the Aspen Institute, and the Soros Justice Fellowship. Her leadership activities include serving on the Coordinating Committee of the New York Reentry Education Network and co-founding the Education from the Inside Out (EIO) Coalition. She is a much sought after public speaker on subjects related to religion and social justice including mass incarceration and social inequality.

Selected Speaking Experience

  • The Danger of a Single Narrative at the All Souls Unitarian Church, New York, NY. April 2014.
  • Sentenced to Change at the Brooklyn Museum Elizabeth Sackler Center for Feminist Art, March, 2014 VIDEO AVAILABLE:
  • Pathways of Possibility at Baruch College, New York, NY. February 2013. VIDEO AVAILABLE:
  • A Radical Theology of Criminal Justice: Unbind Them! at the American Academy of Religion. San Diego, CA. November 2007.
  • Criminal Injustice as the Civil Right Crisis of Our Times at 3rd Annual Harry F. Guggenheim Symposium on Crime in America. John Jay College of Criminal Justice. New York, NY. December 2007.
  • Re-Thinking Re-Entry: Confronting Perpetual Punishment at Harvard Law School Criminal Justice Institute. Cambridge Mass. March, 2006.
  • Increasing Access to Higher Education in Prison and Post-Release. North Carolina Department of Corrections Youth Offender Grant Annual Conference. August 2008.
  • The Correlations Between Slavery & Incarceration for Black Women (panel) at Center for the Study of Women and Society Black Feminism Conference. Graduate Center CUNY New York, NY. March, 2004.
  • A Woman’s Journey Home in Verse at A Journey In Justice : The 10th Annual Roundtable on Women in Prison. Columbia University. New York, NY. June 2002.