Date: June 12, 2015
Location: San Quentin State Prison, California
Event: Prison University Graduation, Class of 2015.
Committed mentor for violence-prone youth in what was once one of the top ten most dangerous cities in the country, Sam Vaughn serves as a Neighborhood Change Agent for Richmond, California’s Office of Neighborhood Safety (ONS). His experiences being mentored by elders while incarcerated for a decade inspired him to become a community leader and help other young men avoid his fate. Believing that violent youth will make better choices for themselves and their communities when able to visualize a healthier path and given life skills, the ONS fellowship program serves as surrogate family for these young men. Over 80% of the ONS fellows have stayed away from gun violence and now live with much more hope and promise. Meanwhile, Richmond’s homicide rate has plummeted.