Jesse Wegman '05 has been named a Soros Justice Fellow for 2010, with a $45,000 stipend that will allow him to spend a year writing a series of articles on jailhouse lawyers. "Jailhouse lawyers are some of the hardest-working lawyers in America, but few people have heard of them," says Wegman. "My hope is that their stories will make people stop and re-think the standard, stereotyped ways we tend to talk about prisoners and prison life in this country."

As a law student at NYU, Wegman chaired the Moot Court Board; co-chaired Law Students Against the Death Penalty; and served as a member of the Prisoners' Rights and Education Project. Wegman's journalistic experience includes stints as managing editor of the New York Observer, a reporter for WNYC Radio in New York City, and an associate producer and reporter for NPR's Living on Earth.

The Open Society Institute has awarded more than $15 million to Soros Justice Fellows since 1997, "as part of a broader effort to curb mass incarceration and ensure a fair and equitable system of justice in the United States."

Posted May 19, 2010