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BIOGRAPHIES

Jennifer Gonnerman is the author of Life on the Outside: The Prison Odyssey of Elaine Bartlett, which was a finalist for the 2004 National Book Award. She is a contributing writer at Mother Jones and New York magazine. Previously, she was a staff writer at The Village Voice, where she covered the criminal justice system for seven years. Her article on which this book is based won the Livingston Award for Young Journalists and the Meyer Berger Award from the Columbia University School of Journalism. To read some of her stories, click here. Jennifer studied at Cambridge University and received a B.A. from Columbia University. She lives in Brooklyn.


Elaine Bartlett
spent sixteen years in Bedford Hills prison under the Rockefeller drug laws. After her release in 2000, she helped found the Mothers of the Disappeared, an advocacy group fighting to repeal the drug laws. She has lobbied New York state legislators, delivered speeches at numerous rallies, and attended anti-drug law events in Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, and Texas. Elaine received an associate’s degree from Mercy College in early 1999, while she was still in prison. She has four children and three grandchildren, and she lives in upper Manhattan.


Lora Tucker
met Elaine Bartlett inside Bedford Hills prison in 1997, when she was running workshops for prisoners. After hearing Elaine's story, Lora decided to try to help her win clemency. She attended rallies, collected signatures, and publicized Elaine's case in the media. Now Lora is employed as the women's service coordinator at the Bowery Residents' Committee in Manhattan. She holds a B.F.A. in interior design from Syracuse University, and in 2005 she received a master's degree from Hunter College School of Social Work, specializing in community development and social justice. In her free time, she writes poetry; one of her best-known poems is about the first time she met Elaine. Lora grew up in Howard Beach, Queens, where she still resides. To contact her, click here.