President & Executive Director
Laurin Leonard (Hodge)
Laurin often says she did not pick prison; prison picked her. It was the unexpected incarceration of her mother for a first-time, nonviolent, white-collar indictment, which motivated her to craft a social entrepreneurial career as a millennial woman of color. As the Executive Director, Laurin Leonard oversees the day-to-day development of the organization and serves as the vision keeper for shifting policies, programs, practices and ultimately the allocation of resources. Mission: Launch envisions the elimination of the lasting harm caused by our criminal justice system, which requires a robust approach of leveraging technology and innovation as well as restoring self-sufficiency through inclusive entrepreneurship.
Laurin is honored when she is invited to walk the reentry journey with women and men who are rebuilding their lives.
- Educational Background & Community Affiliations:
- The Johns Hopkins University | Masters of Science, Information
- Systems Candidate
- Opportunity Collaboration, 2016 Delegate
- Nominee, The White House United State of Women Summit, 2016
- Aspen Institute & American Express Emerging Nonprofit Leader, 2015
- Points of Light Honoree, 2014
- Caux Scholar, 2014
- Ashoka & American Express North American Emerging Social Innovators, 2014
- StartingBloc LA 2013
- The Johns Hopkins University | Certified, Competitive Intelligence 2011
- The Johns Hopkins University | Certified, Leadership Development 2010
- Program for Minority Managers
- Old Dominion University | Bachelors of Science, Sociology, 2007
Co-founder & Director of Strategy & Innovation
Teresa Y. Hodge, a passionate advocate for people with criminal connections, is committed to reducing the lasting harm caused by prison. It was a 70-month federal prison sentence for a white-collar, non-violent, first-time offense that introduced her first-hand to the justice system and mass incarceration in America. Upon coming home, she and her daughter Laurin Leonard (Hodge) co-founded Mission: Launch, Inc. a non-profit focused on introducing technology and entrepreneurship to previously incarcerated individuals as a way of ensuring self-sufficiency. Additionally, the organization manages the Rebuilding Re-Entry Coalition, a citizen-led movement committed to creating a more just and inclusive society for returning citizens (a person who exits prison or jail).
As the Director of Strategy & Innovation for Mission: Launch, Inc. Teresa plays a critical role in building strategic partnerships and establishing social enterprise models for greater reach and sustainability. Prior experience as an entrepreneur allowed her to maximize her time in prison looking for best practices to not only help her and others, get back on their feet upon release. Hodge is a certified life coach, with a specialty in prison re-entry. Her memoir and private coaching practice through Pearls & Prison continues to bring meaning and closure to the time she spent in prison.
Teresa is a 2016-2017 Open Society Soros Justice Fellow. Her Fellowship was focused on Unlock Inclusion to tech opportunities (jobs and startups) for individuals living with criminal convictions. During her advocacy year she was inspired to create a tech solution to a problem Mission: Launch faced and this lead to R3 Score. She currently serves as the CEO/Co-founder of R3 Score.
As part of her 2015-2016 Open Society Soros Justice Advocacy Fellowship she authored a position paper - Unlock Inclusion: A Pathway of Digital Inclusion for People Living with Criminal Records. Teresa believes that without tech education and inclusion at the core of reentry mediations millions of Americans with criminal records will remain unplugged and locked out of sustainable opportunities. Her innovative approach to criminal justice advocacy has led to national recognition. She presented twice at SXSW (2016 and 2017) and is a 2017 Dewey Winburne SXSW Community Service Award recipient. Teresa’s TEDx talk “We’ve Made Coming Home Too Hard” highlights the impact of personal bias and social stigma on formerly incarcerated people.
Additionally, she is a part of JustLeadership USA's inaugural cohort and New Profit's Unlocked Futures inaugural cohort.
Dr. Pamela Y. Keye
Director of Research and Design
Dr. Pamela Y. Keye
Dr. Pamela Y. Keye is a former superintendent and award-winning educator. As a justice-involved individual she is committed to educating and advocating on issues associated with the collateral consequences of incarceration as well as gender-responsive programming for women. She is the author of a forthcoming book documenting her own road to reentry and serves as a keynote speaker to academic, community, civic and business audiences both nationally and internationally.Pamela has successfully worked with individuals and organizations to design and evaluate programs and services that focus on research and evidence based practices that support the empowerment of returning citizens.
As the Director of Research and Design, Dr. Keye brings to the Mission: Launch team her technical skills as a researcher, instructional accountability systems thinker, and thought leader in education. Her keen insight and lived experiences are creating a platform of advocacy that supports not only the work of Mission Launch, but her desire to make a difference in the reentry space for justice-involved individuals especially women.