The Innocence Project’s 25th year will soon come to a close. Over the last 12 months, we’ve taken a few moments to pause and reflect on how far we’ve come and how far we still have to go. With Thanksgiving approaching, I’d like to pause once more.
One theme that has come up again and again this year is community. Our wide network of dedicated supporters, staff, clients and partners has always been an essential part of the Innocence Project’s success. We wouldn’t be here today without the support, partnership and vision of thousands of people around the world. I joined the organization a little more than 13 years ago, and I have been humbled and amazed again and again by the countless people who go above and beyond to help us set innocent people free from prison and pass critical criminal justice reforms.
Whether you work on wrongful convictions yourself or you help to spread the word about our cases and reforms or you’ve been a financial supporter of our work, you have built this movement. And it truly means the world to us.
On behalf of our clients—some of whom are still fighting for freedom, some of whom are spending their first Thanksgivings as free men and women, while others have enjoyed 20 Thanksgivings since they were released—thank you for helping to make their freedom possible.
Innocence Project Eric Kelley with his family moments after he was released from prison in New Jersey on Nov. 8, 2017.