The Criminal Justice Insider Podcast with Babz Rawls Ivy & Jeff Grant, Guests: LaResse Harvey & Tracie Bernardi, Once Incarcerated, Fri., Mar. 5, 2021 at 9 am ET

Please join us on Friday, March 5th at 9 am EST, when guests LaResse Harvey & Tracie Bernardi, Once Incarcerated, on the Criminal Justice Insider Podcast with Babz Rawls Ivy & Jeff Grant – Live on WNHH 103.5 FM New Haven, rebroadcast at 5 pm. Live-streamed on Facebook Live. On podcast platforms 24/7 everywhere. The Criminal Justice Insider Podcast is sponsored by the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven and Progressive Prison Ministries, Inc.


Listen on SoundCloud:




LaResse “Buttons” Harvey

LaResse is one of the Great Eight inducted into the Connecticut Hall of Change, memorializing her twenty plus years of restorative justice, public health and racial justice modalities and policy changes.  LaResse Harvey was single teenage mother of two, when she served a ten-year sentence in prison.  As such, she possesses a crucial perspective on community issues and the importance of social reform.  Ms. Harvey worked on issues of restorative justice, criminal and drug policy reform, prison and pardon reform, housing, reentry, drug treatment, and custodial parental rights. Ms. Harvey has four college degrees, three Associates Degrees from Tunxis Community College and a bachelor’s in social work from Saint Joseph’s College, West Hartford, CT.  Currently attending Trinity Law School obtaining a Master’s in Nonprofit Law. 

LaResse Harvey with Tracie Bernardi founded Once Incarcerated…Once INc…, a 501c3 offering peer support for youth and adults currently and formally incarcerated.  Together LaResse and Tracie host a national weekly Zoom meeting Once IN Anonymous or OIA for formally incarcerated people ONLY.  In 2019 working with OIC-New Britain and ParaDYM youths, Once IN has created an Implicit Bias Advocacy and Civics Training Manual.  It covers undoing racism, civic engagement, advocacy knowledge and hands on experience, along with building a current Issue Campaign.  As an author LaResse has published two books on Amazon, Buttons’ Journey: My First Two Years Living with PTSD and Buttons’ Journey: My Spiritual Foundation is….Praise!  

As Founder and Executive Director of Civic Trust Public Lobbying Company in Connecticut.  Ms. Harvey passed over 50 pieces of bipartisan legislation! This firm provides a full range of lobbying support and consultation to community groups and individuals throughout the country.  Ms. Harvey advocated for the Children’s Act of 1988.  In 2008, Harvey helped to put an end to Connecticut’s ‘3-Strikes law’ and published an article with the International Journal of Music promoting the importance of “The Arts” as a form of rehabilitation.  Featured with Jeff Grant at Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Coming Home from Prison: A New Reality, discussion series. In 2010, her skills in strengthening Connecticut’s communities helped in her successful campaign of ‘Ban the Box‘.  In 2011, after founding Civic Trust Public Lobbying Company, Ms. Harvey had a successful lobbying season, with passage of the following measures:  

  • Marijuana Decriminalization

  • Emergency Medical Assistance for anyone experiencing an overdose/911 Good Samaritan,

  • Sentence Modification,

  • Establishment of Risk Reduction Credit inside Connecticut’s prison

  • National Recommendations to Eliminate Prison Rape,

  • Credit Report discrimination,

  • Creation of Department of Correction Advisory Committee and

  • Provide protection for expelled students to participate in adult education programs without being required to officially withdraw from school.

Ms. Harvey was the Director of Strategic Relations and former policy director of A Better Way Foundation, a Connecticut nonprofit organization that works to establish reentry policies, substance abuse treatment, and a public health model towards ending the war on drugs.  LaResse created the advocacy toolkit, Speak Up! Speak Out! Translated into over fifty languages, this toolkit was utilized in the 2010 International Drug Czar conference in Budapest.  A Better Way Foundation was instrumental in equalizing sentencing for crack/powder cocaine; continued financing for substance abuse treatment for state and community facilities; and instituting the Racial Ethnic Impact Statement for policy changes in Connecticut.

Ms. Harvey was the chairwoman of the Criminal Justice Committee of the New Britain chapter of the NAACP and created the resolution for NAACP version of Ban The Box. She also works with adolescents and youth ages 10-21 years old on racial justice, advocacy, and life skills.  In July of 2010, Harvey was awarded the Patriot Award from the Bill of Rights Defense Committee for her dedication in ensuring constitutional and human rights for all Connecticut residents. She has also provided a way for young people to receive a college education, by partnering with Goodwin College to offer a two-year scholarship for students who intern with the A Better Way Foundation. On September 19, 2019, Connecticut’s General Assembly honored LaResse with a citation for 20 years of successful reentry and grassroots lobbying.


Once Incarcerated…Once INc… a.k.a Once IN!

Phone: 860-829-9920 or email:

Tuesday OIA Zoom Meeting info

Once In is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Once Incarcerated Once IN Anonymous

Time: recurring Tuesday night meeting 6pm or Saturdays at NOON


Email:  or Call 562-318-7703

Buttons’ Journey PTSD:

Buttons’ Journey Praise:

Tracie Bernardi


Tracie Bernardi is a Certified Recovery Support Specialist. She is the co-founder and co-director of Once Incarcerated… Once In – a non-profit organization geared toward ending recidivism and generational incarceration. Tracie co- facilitates Once In Anonymous (OIA) an on-line safe haven for formerly incarcerated people.

Tracie is also a dedicated ACLU Smart Justice Leader fighting to end mass incarceration.  As a formerly incarcerated women, who entered prison a teenager and left as a woman, after serving 23 years in prison.  Ms. Bernardi speaks up against solitary confinement as a survivor of serving seven of her twenty-three years in Solitary Confinement and ending mass incarceration in Connecticut and the nation.  

Ms. Bernardi is a Phoenix Association member.  Tracie is helping to change the culture of corrections. As an influential public speaker, Tracie has spoken at Yale, Wesleyan, CCSU, Capital Community College, The Connecticut Women’s March, The Connecticut Convention center, and several public libraries and churches, panels and rally’s to advocate and education on mass incarceration reform.

Tracie is published in Kenneth E. Hartman’s Too Cruel Not Unusual, the other death penalty.  Tracie is an avid writer, looking to publish a memoir. Visit her blog-  As an artist of the Prison Arts Project, Ms. Bernardi’s art displayed in The Brooklyn Museum, , The American Visionary Art Museum, Maier Museum of Art at Randolph College, and Hartford Public Library.


Please tell your friends, colleagues and clients:  

The Criminal Justice Insider Podcast with Babz Rawls Ivy and Jeff Grant is broadcast live at 9 am ET on the first and third Friday of each month from the WNHH 103.5 FM studios in New Haven. It is rebroadcast on WNHH at 5 pm ET the same day.

Our Facebook Page: 

Our Twitter handle: @insidercj

Our Instagram handle: @criminaljusticeinsider


The show is live-streamed and podcasted anytime/anywhere at:

New Haven Independent: 

Facebook Live: 

YouTube: https://youtube 





The show is also archived at:


Community Foundation of Greater New Haven website: 


An article about each show is published a few days later in the New Haven Independent (

Please “like” us on Facebook!    

More info here

Contact us: 

 Criminal Justice Insider Sponsored by:


Criminal Justice Insider Sponsored by: