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Testimonials

“There are so many opportunities to take advantage of people who go through our justice system, especially those who are convicted of white-collar crime and have resources. So, I’m always skeptical of people and groups who offer to ‘help’ people with that kind of background.

Jeff and Progressive Prison Ministries are different. Jeff’s White Collar Support Group creates a community of people who need support but are almost always unfairly judged when they ask for help anywhere else. In this way, Jeff fills a need that many want to pretend doesn’t exist. 

It was an honor and a pleasure to speak to the White Collar Support Group about First Step Act time credits earlier this year. And I’d have no reservations at all in sending close friends and family members Jeff’s way if they find themselves in a situation where they need the help.”

– Peter Tomasek, Esq., Interrogating Justice

“Jeff Grant’s White Collar Support Group offers a powerful forum to help former inmates overcome the experience of White Collar incarceration, reenter the community and rebuild a life. Upon release, former inmates can dream of a new start. Still, it’s challenging to overcome the history of our malfeasance and the ineffable experience of incarceration: its agony, isolation, sense of exile, the misery of day-to-day confinement and excruciating self-loathing. All of it lingers long after the arrival home. What’s special about Jeff is he continues to remain in the trenches with you, reminding us that the struggle is life-long but always trending positive, especially with the help of others, by continuing to communicate our honest tribulations. He is relentlessly pursuing positive outcomes but always mindful of the hurdle, regularly offering his own struggles and occasional setbacks so that we are never left to face these challenges in a vacuum or alone.”

– John Dimenna

“In August 2017, about 10 months after my first wife died of cancer, I received word that the State of New Hampshire was indicting me for a financial crime. The worst time of my life was about to get much worse! In November of the following year I was convicted and began 20 months of incarceration in the state prison system. I was paroled in June 2020, but I had lost my home, virtually all my money and possessions, my professional career and my reputation.  I went to live with family in Connecticut. I knew no one and nothing about how to move forward. My counsellor told me about Jeff Grant and the White Collar Support Group. Joining it was the biggest step I’ve taken in getting myself on an upward trajectory in my life.

The first thing I noticed about the group is that they are people like me.  When I was “inside” I met many “normal” people who’d made bad decisions, but the white collar folks are people with backgrounds like mine who were trying to start over  and willing to help others on their way. Jeff Grant, an ordained clergyman and lawyer, has dedicated his ministry to helping those like us to regain our place in society. He also helps us to understand that we should not define ourselves by our biggest mistakes and failures.

I strongly recommend this group to anyone who is facing incarceration or entanglement with the justice system. I wish I’d met Jeff Grant and the White Collar Support Group at the beginning of my ordeal. I have been in the group for over a year now and seen people come to us who are almost paralyzed with shame and bewildered about what will come next. The group provides them with a safe place to talk about their issues and practical advice about what they face. No one can truly prepare for prison, but knowing something about it, and that there are people who made it through, and will be there with a smile and thumbs up when they get out, is literally priceless. I thank God for calling Jeff Grant to create and sustain this supportive oasis.”

– Tom Gage

“When I received a target letter from the United States Government stating that I was under investigation and would soon be indicted on federal felony charges of blah blah blah (read terrifying)- I crumbled. Thankfully I had my own office at work, because I was in the fetal position under my desk, sobbing.

I remained in the fetal position in one form or another – until I found Jeff’s group: White Collar Support Group. When I first found it after fervently googling desperate pleas like “help me not go to federal prison,” I was leery. I had already contacted prison consultants who appeared first in the searches. These people wanted thousands of dollars that I didn’t have. They told me I would surely receive a conviction of years and needed their help to receive the best sentence possible.

Progressive Prison Ministries was different. At my first meeting Jeff kindly welcomed me, introduced men and women who had been in my shoes, or were strongly standing in them with me. I wasn’t alone anymore. My daily crying sessions ceased. I started to think clearly again. The group was pivotal in helping me put things into perspective. I listened, and began to trust members who said “no matter what happens, it will not be as bad as you imagine it will be”.

I remain in the midst of my case, but I am not suicidal now. I have my head held high and I will walk through the next months and years with grace. I know this group will support me, and non-judgmentally be there for me. The fear is lessening, and for the first time in 3 years since this nightmare began, I feel a glimmer of hope.”

– Jessica L., Massachusetts

“Would highly recommend Jeff Grant! His presentation entitled ‘Pleasing Everybody Pleases Nobody’ was very powerful and was delivered genuinely and with humility. Dial up empathy, compassion, forgiveness and understanding. Thank you Jeff!”

– Sarah Long

“I have known Jeff for over 40 years. He is both a friend and a man I admire and look up to. There are some people in life who simply enrich your life. Jeff has been that for me. Even when we have not spoken for years, I know he is someone I can always call on. Jeff’s ministry toward white collar prisoners is first class. My clients have called upon him and have been greatly helped. His insight and empathy help men and women deal with life changing circumstances and he helps them come out of this stronger and deeper. Jeff Grant is a man who makes a difference and who is a genuine disciple of Christ. My life is richer because I know him.”

– Todd Conormon, Esq.

“Jeff is a true inspiration to anyone coming home from prison to face the many trials and tribulations that life throws at you.  I made a very bad choice in 2009 which led me to a federal indictment and 7 months in Danbury Federal Prison Camp for women and then three months in a halfway house.  I had gut wrenching guilt and remorse, and immersed myself in every program available in Danbury.  I was seeking self-awareness of who I was and why I veered off my path of good decision making.  It was not until I came home and met Jeff Grant that I truly started my journey to redemption and forgiveness.  His amazing attitude, coupled with immense experience, brought such clarity to my very foggy existence.  Jeff founded a White Collar Support Group and invited me to join in.  Finding that group was such a turning point for me as I was lost.  The group helped me with my immense feelings of guilt and how to overcome adversities that I never knew would exist for me.  I am grateful to Jeff and all the men and women in that group and feel so fortunate to know I am not alone in my journey.  Due to Jeff, I am able to give back to the women I now work with within the criminal justice system by utilizing my strengths, experience and educational background.”

– Jacqueline Polverari

“Jeff was an instrumental leader of our Management Team [at Fresh Start Enterprises] who demonstrated an awesome ‘continuous improvement’ mindset with much success. Jeff was always flexible in working with our team as our schedules and situations varied vastly from one project to another. He was professional, kind, motivated and passionate about his work each and every day that I’ve worked with him. His skills and experiences that he brought to the table were invaluable. Jeff brought creative and innovative techniques to us, especially with regards to his approach on problem solving, marketing/sales strategies, and the accountability he held our team to. I can always remember Jeff bringing ‘inspiring project-presentations’ to our team meetings with his zesty white board and chart displays…I knew when I asked Jeff for support or advice in tricky situations, I would get the best possible assistance and leadership available.”

– Walt Cichocki

“Jeff Grant is a man who says a resounding yes to hope and transformation.  He uses his superb skills of leadership and administration to make a better world.  From a very broken personal place, he has learned to become whole and to help others break through to places of compassion and enlightenment.  He is a man of ideals, spirituality, and very pragmatic and efficacious business skills.  He has an unsentimental empathy for people.  His an honest man and a very hard worker.”

– Tim Askew

“On November 14, 2019, Jeffrey Grant and Jacqueline Purcell-Polverari were kind enough to speak with 2 of my criminal justice classes at Albertus Magnus College. They spoke at length about their experiences with the criminal justice system, as well as outlining approaches they believe would make the system more effective. Their personal stories were well received by the students and they were open to any and all questions they may have had. It was truly a pleasure to work with Jeff and Jacqueline and I look forward to collaborating more in the future.”

– John Lawrie

“Rev. Jeff Grant, J.D. is extremely thoughtful and innovative. When Jeff expressed many years ago at Union Theological Seminary his interest to start a White Collar Ministry I knew it would have an incredible impact not just locally but globally. He brings to his ministry legal and executive leadership expertise that has allowed Jeff to build a ministry that is sustainable at transforming lives, especially those who are and have been formerly incarcerated and/or experienced substance abuse. Jeff operates out of a paradigm of care, heal-centeredness, education and awareness. His primary goal is to see people thrive and realize new hope from their past pain. I highly recommend Jeff for any public speaking engagement, funding to advance his ministry and project | program services; and as a collaborative partner.”

– Rev. Dr. Yvette Wilson-Barnes, J.D.

“Jeff was a student of mine from 2009 – 2012 while studying for his Master of Divinity at Union Theological Seminary. I also served as one of his senior thesis advisors. In his focus in Christian Social Ethics, he took several of my social justice classes and did exemplary work. It was not a surprise to me that Jeff co-founded a prison ministry based on the work he did in my classes studying refugee and liminal communities, the underground economy, and the marginalized and oppressed.

– Samuel Cruz

Jeff is a fantastic human being with a powerful passion for people. I value his insight, structure and hard work ethic,and will be forever changed from knowing him.”

– Anonymous

“I came to know Jeff well when we attended the same recovery groups in Westport, CT. What impresses me most about Jeff is his candor, commitment to his sobriety, acceptance of the consequences of his behavior before he became sober, and service to others. We also attended together monthly meetings of the Westport-Weston Clergy Association. We still communicate frequently; I consider him a trusted friend and colleague.”

– Rev. Pete Powell

“Working with Jeff and Chloe on White Collar Week has been an absolute blessing. First, just knowing they exist – that people are devoting time and energy to healing on the other side of corruption or falling off-course – is awe-inspiring. This is the kind of cultural healing that is going to bring all of us to a better place.Jeff and Chloe both brought a practical understanding to the larger issue, a heart for the deeper forces at play, and utmost respect to the process. As podcast host/co-guest, they were skillful, articulate, clear, and reassuring. The conversation was in very capable hands, and I felt we reached an important level of connection as a result.

When I wrote in Can’t Stop the Sunrise about Humanizing as the ultimate path to transforming corruption, I had no idea I would be so fortunate as to meet others walking that road. Not only are they walking the path, they are reaching the people who truly need the message of hope in redemption – the most encouraging kind of trailblazing! Jeff knows that regarding each other as whole humans is how we grow personally and collectively. Now, I have met people who are further along the path still, and giving me hope as we all walk it together… Thank you Jeff Grant and Chloe Coppola!”

– Vanessa Osage

“I first found out about Rev. Jeff Grant and Progressive Prison Ministries about two years ago in 2018 through a stray email that found its way into my inbox. I was most interested in their weekly online White Collar Support Group. I intended to check it out but, as happens more and more frequently, I got distracted, busy and forgot about it. Then, a few months ago–in April 2020 I got another email from Rev. Grant and PPM announcing that they were going to have their 200th White Collar Support Group Meeting (4-year anniversary). I couldn’t make that hallmark meeting but have attended and participated on 10 out of 12 meetings over the past three months. What a rare and powerful forum this is! I’m 55 years old and have been in recovery from addictive-compulsive stealing for 35+ years (since 1990). I shoplifting or stole from the workplace about a thousand times between ages 15 – 25. I lived a secret life and was arrested twice for shoplifting and fired from two jobs for employee theft before hitting my bottom in the middle of law school.

I came clean with my family, got into therapy and began making lemonade from the lemons of pain and shame that was my life. In 1992, I founded C.A.S.A. (Cleptomaniacs And Shoplifters Anonymous) – a free, open, weekly support group in metro-Detroit. I did get licensed as an attorney, then got my MSW, and have worked as an addictions therapist the last 23 years. I’ve written four addiction recovery books and have been a point-person in the media. Rev. Grant’s path and my path have many similarities. So, I connected with his story and his support group easily and deeply. The White Collar Support Group helps me personally, helps me assist my clients, and I’ve referred several clients to attend the group as well. Progressive Prison Ministries is a beacon of light in a darkened world.

– Terrence Daryl Shulman

“Where there is hope, there is faith.  Where there is faith, miracles happen.  In the midst of severe adversity and trauma, a support group that focuses on healing, raising mental health awareness and providing hope for a new chance at life is the miracle that entered into my life.  It is clearly evident that Progressive Prison Ministries, Inc. is committed to changing and inspiring lives of those who have fallen and are committed to becoming stronger through their failures.  I could not be the strong person I am without the intellectual and strong-minded friends who have reinstilled hope and a sense of value in me.  They have become like family to me during the most tragic event in my life. Progressive Prison Ministries, Inc. is a coalition of forward-thinking individuals and leaders who are committed to lifelong wellness, belonging, and making a true impact in this world.  Through this support network, increasing our sense of safety, security and belonging and serving without judgement is made possible.  We learn to trust how we feel by sharing our stories.  This organization is an essential social support so one does not feel isolated in the worst possible stigmatized situation.  Every day we have the choice to support our body and mind’s healing response or undermines it.  Being a part of Progressive Prison Ministries, Inc. is one of the most important steps I have taken to begin my own healing process while helping others and giving back through the power of human connection.  It’s essential to be present “here and now” as I enter into a new life.  My failures have allowed me to open up my eyes and see what is most important in life.  I couldn’t do it without the genuine compassion and care through the inspirational, spiritual and powerful meetings that bring the power of people together at Progressive Prison Ministries, Inc.”

– Anonymous

“Shortly after my release in September 2019, I learned of Jeff Grant and his amazing work through the Rich Roll podcast. His story resonated with me and I decided to reach out. To my amazement, he immediately responded and we ended up having a great conversation about life, spirituality and the journey of redemption. It was refreshing to be able to speak with someone who understood my plight. I was looking for guidance on how to return to society and get my life back in order. I never realized how tough reentry would be but also knew the process was not going to be an easy journey. He invited me to join his support group, which I found very insightful and helpful. I am beyond grateful to have Jeff as a friend as you are a true inspiration.”

– William P., Virginia

“When I first joined the White Collar Support Group, I was nervous and not committed. I heard there were other women on the call but they were not on the first couple of calls I was on. I felt anxious as the only person of color on the calls as well as the only  woman. Over time, I developed more trust and became more vulnerable to the group. I have never felt pressured to share or be anyone different on these calls. I now look forward to our weekly time because it is the one time a week when I feel whole regardless of whether I am having an “up” day or a “down” day. There is nothing like a shared experience with people who have walked your walk and know exactly what you are talking about.  When new people come to the calls, I am eager to put a metaphorical arm around their shoulders and remind them of what they already know but have temporarily forgotten: “You will survive. You will have some up days. You will have some down days but we are all here for you. And…. Yes, you will survive. Life will never be the same again but you will survive. You will discover that you are really an amazing person in the process. You will survive.”

So many people come to the call in a complete state of panic. Their situation is not what they bargained for. They are losing everything they once knew. They want to know how to make it all go away. They want to know how they can regain everything they are afraid of losing. The calls become a place where your entire humanity, not just your mistakes, are affirmed and upheld as valuable. The calls are the one place of refuge where we are reminded that we are NOT, in any way shape or form, our crimes. The calls are one place where our whole humanity is affirmed. We do not give legal advice but we give soul support that helps build resilience. And in the long run, it is a game of resilience.

The best part of these calls over the last couple of years has been taking relationships off-line. I have met several of the men and women that have been on the calls. They are more than friends. They are Anam Cara, the Celtic word for “Soul Friend.” I love our transparency. I love how we are all striving to be our best selves. I love the support and love I receive. I love the celebrations of our successes no matter how small and I love the encouragement I receive when I am down. Most of all, I have turned this into an accountability group. I still wrestle with why I made the poor decisions I made and committed a financial crime. I do not want to be that person. I want to be a person that makes smart decisions. I want to be a person that is fully aware of the ethical impact of my decisions on other people and also on institutions. On the calls, I continue to get help in the areas that I feel the weakest. I know that because of these calls and the support and non-judgment that I receive, that I am able to grow beyond the limitations that my crime has placed on my life.”

– Anonymous

“Jeff has been a ‘friend of our family’ for many years.  When a catastrophic situation for me was very highly publicized, Jeff reached out to me through a family member and offered his support. Jeff has been a confidential ear, a source of support, a source of professional advice, and a spiritual support to me.  The Monday night online support meeting, which you have an option to be anonymously included in, offers a very loving, upbeat, supportive group. Both Jeff and his wife Lynn have offered help for our family, including my husband, which makes for very comfortable and loving approach for help. I feel very blessed for the opportunity to have a person with his integrity and leadership, and his experience, strength and hope, to be part of my team, and my life.”

– Anonymous

“Jeff has been an invaluable resource for me as I continue to reintegrate into society after serving 42 months in Federal prison. Unlike many others, I joined the group well after my sentence ended. I can only imagine how much smoother and peaceful my own situation would have been if we met earlier. I was in a place emotionally where I felt every decision I made was altered because of my past experiences. Shortly after being diagnosed with PTSD from my 42 month stint, I met Jeff on LinkedIn. The group has been my weekly outlet where we are amongst our own, and nothing is off limits to discuss. I learned my issues and obstacles were common amongst others that have been through the same “system” as me. I also learned there is hope and sunshine at the end of a dark tunnel.  Thank you Jeff for facilitating a very meaningful group bringing us together in the name of personal growth.”

– Leon B.

“Jeff has created and nurtured a beautiful community of support, hope and light. Community members have first hand knowledge of what it takes to withstand fear-provoking federal investigations, face complex charges, and navigate a labyrinthine criminal justice system. The community is warm and welcoming, honest and supportive, transparent and non-judgemental. Our time together provides important opportunities to share stories, express feelings, offer encouragement and express solidarity in silence. Our community is diverse in many ways and offers a place for everyone. Yet we are united in our hope, humility and commitment to continuous personal reflection and growth. Our members have faced and survived extremely challenging circumstances and have emerged stronger, wiser and more grateful for their lived experiences. I am grateful to have been introduced to Jeff and been welcomed into this community. My participation experiences have given me opportunities to listen, share, offer, learn, hope, be thankful and find peace. No two human beings live exactly the same life and no two people in our community are exactly the same. Yet we share a deeply-held and unwavering belief in the limitless capacity of the human spirit to overcome hardship and transform painful experiences into opportunities to help others.  I am a better person for having been part of this group. It is the shared experience of destructive interactions with the judicial system that brought us together, our honest conversations about the human experience that keep us together, and Fr. Jeff’s leadership that allows us to be a light in the world for others.

– Anonymous

“A few months into my legal saga I found Jeff and the support group. I was quickly spiraling out of control, not knowing what to do and without any support from anyone who could understand what I was going through. Jeff invited me to join the first meeting- it changed everything, it helped me from day one. I didn’t realize how many of us had or were currently going through white collar related situations and how many of us shared similar feelings. I was able to share with a group of trusted friends everything I had been feeling and received meaningful feedback. So many of us in this circle, once submerged, can so easily drown- this support group became a constant uplift. The individual stories allowed me to realize I was not alone. This group got me through pleading, sentencing and serving my sentence. I can’t say enough about how this group saved my life.”

– Andy T., Florida

“Let me happily join my voice to those many who honor Jeff Grant and his ministry. I am proud to call Jeff my friend. His commitment to criminal justice fairness and to mitigating its human costs has created a lifeline for many, and the ripples from the good his work has done has a wider effect than his humble nature might permit him to acknowledge. His is the space of responsibility, redemption, reintegration, and a life of love in action. When scripture teaches that one can take what was meant for one’s harm and turn it to good; when we are told that the Lord requires of us to do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly, we can turn to Jeff and his prisonist.org work for shining examples.”

– Rick Dryer, Colorado

“I will never forget the morning that my life changed.  I was happily getting ready to go on a boys weekend hunting trip, when I heard voices in my driveway.  I looked out the window to see a police officer who asked me to come to the door. Standing on my porch was the officer and a US Postal inspector.   The postal inspector told me that I needed to appear in court in 2 weeks.  I went inside my house and wept.  Trying to figure out what to do, I decided to Google “white collar support groups”.  Much to my surprise, Jeff Grant and the organization that he founded was first on the list.  I immediately reached out to them.  

It has been a long arduous journey trying to navigate the criminal justice system, but thanks to Jeff and the White Collar Support Group I have been able to keep my wits about me and have a better understanding of the entire process.  It has been such a relief having this support system that can guide me along this difficult path.  I have leaned on Jeff several times to help me “navigate the waters”.  Also, besides Jeff, I have reached out to other members for answers and support.  I am so very thankful to God that I found Jeff and the support group.  I am certain that without the support and the information that I have received over the last 13 months that my life would not be what it is today.”

– S. O’Hare, Maine

“I have known Jeff Grant since 1981, when I hired him as an Associate in my law firm shortly after he graduated from law school. I was confident that Jeff would become a talented attorney and successful. Yet, I did not fully appreciate all that he would become.
 
In creating Progressive Prison Ministries, Jeff has established a platform, more aptly a lifeline, for those in the throes of despair, uncertainty, and lacking direction who are either about to be sentenced to prison or addressing the difficulties of life after prison.  It is one thing to offer a forum where people can share their experiences, hopes, and fears, but Jeff’s genius is in shepherding the ever-growing number of people who have sought refuge and support.  Jeff’s leadership is paramount to the community.  More than that, Jeff’s demeanor, willingness to share his journey, bear his soul, and his insecurities break the ice for others to join in the discussions offering direction and purpose to the group. As the organization continues to grow, it has developed other forums to assist not only those who lived through the gauntlet of prison but also a path to help families and loved ones deal with the trauma suffered by those who remain behind.”

– Robert Simels, Connecticut

“After my arraignment in August 2021, one of my daughters suggested that I listen to a podcast with Jeff Grant as the guest. That is all it took for me to find the Monday night White Collar Support Group and to visit. I did this for a couple of weeks, and after each time, my mood would sour. My wife noticed that I was in a decidedly less upbeat humor after spending time on the call. I was sure that this would be temporary, and so I stuck with it. Still, I was downcast after each successive call…and I was six or so visits in. When does the pick-me-up actually deliver the lift?

Finally it struck me – Jeff Grant is a deliverer of reality. This, in turn, eventually lifts one’s mood. When information can cut away the fog of distortion and magical thinking, then the real work of taking care of oneself can begin. Information is therapeutic if one has the stomach for the real world; if one does not, however, then the future will continue to be illusory and evasive, and who can live in that? Progressive Prison Ministries provides real shelter for courageous people with real problems. God bless PPM.”

– Brad Spencer, Alabama

“Jeff Grant does what others can’t; use his personal experience losing his marriage, his law practice, and his freedom to show others facing this same fate that there is a future they can return to that is purposeful and full of joy where they can recover their self respect and contribute to society. Not an easy task but one which criminal defense attorneys can learn from to instill hope at time when clients feel like their lives are over and nothing will ever be good again.”

– Jon May, Esq.

“It has been a pleasure to work for and alongside Jeff. His thought leadership and drive are matched only by his passion – clearly evidenced by a legacy of deep and wide relationships and ongoing commitment in criminal justice. I have personally viewed Jeff’s impact in that world, working together at increasing brand awareness both as his role as Executive Director of Family ReEntry and Prisonist.org, and through his developed programs, presentations, interviews, and public appearances.”

– David Riss

“My agency was hired by Family ReEntry, where Jeff is the Executive Director. What started as a client relationship quickly became one of professional respect and personal friendship. It’s nearly impossible not to enjoy working with Jeff; his incredible knowledge, intellect and passion for his work is infectious. An incredibly hard worker, Jeff is an inspiration and amazing leader, particularly in the nonprofit sector where he flourishes right now. Its been an incredible experience to work with Jeff; we learn from each other everyday. I consider myself very fortunate to work with Jeff, and anyone who has the chance to know him and/or work with him, would feel the same.”

– Greg Walsh

“I have known & worked on several Committees with Jeff Grant for several years. He has shown himself by his actions to be a man of integrity & honor. His life is devoted to helping others by being an agent of change for Reentry people. As a valuable advisor to our company (Reentry Survivors LLC) we have survived & thrived under his wisdom. Thank you Jeff for stepping up to the plate & always being there when we need you.”

– Barry Diamond

“It was a privilege and a joy to make arrangements to have Jeff Grant come and visit as our special guest preacher and speaker as the capstone to our church’s Opioids and Addiction month of learning and reflection . His journey and his experience speak as powerfully as his words and his presence. It was fantastic that he could come to the church and make the case for his inner city vocation and volunteerism, as well as his Progressive Prison Ministries nonprofit (white-collar). Both his ministries are crucial, even as they serve dramatically different groups of people living in dramatically different contexts. In the era of #MeToo, I’m still remembering his words: ‘we have to teach men how to behave better’.His sermon also gave hope to so many in our congregation who are struggling with mental health or addiction issues, whether personally, in their families or among their friends and colleagues. His life makes the case for criminal justice reform. Personally, it was also a joy to have an excuse to get together with my Union Theological Seminary Classmate in person! I remain grateful for Jeff’s journey, commitment, and ministry.”

– Rev. John Shellito

“We had  the pleasure of hosting a panel presentation featuring Rev. Jeff Grant and Jacquie Polverari entitled “Finding Hope and Purpose after Incarceration” at Western Connecticut State University on October 30, 2019.  We had a mix of students, professors, criminal justice professionals, people in recovery and those who have been personally affected by incarceration.  We found Jeff and Jacquie to be open and honest as they shared their experiences leading up to incarceration and their struggles upon release.  A period of questions and answers followed.  A focus of discussion was the “collateral consequences” that an offender’s incarceration has on one’s family.  Another topic of focus was the difficulty for felons finding employment.  We are very pleased with the experience of having had Jeff and Jacquie share their insights so openly and humbly with us at Western and we look forward to future endeavors with them.”

– Marilyn C. Kain

“I have known Jeff for approximately 15 years, through good times and bad, sometimes on a nearly daily basis. I know of no one with his dedication, range of experience and better able to minister to his flock. His strategy and judgment border on genius.”

– Anonymous

“What an honor it was to interview Rev. Jeff Grant on my cable talk show last year. He shared his journey from successful New York attorney, to prison minister. His story is very moving, as he is earnestly helping individuals and families move from incarceration to meaningful re-entry into civilian life. He shares his knowledge, and demonstrates his faith through his work in the Progressive Prison Ministries. “The fall from Grace is not only spiritual, it is literal”, according to Rev. Jeff Grant. His words are exemplified through his advocacy for criminal justice reform. Jeff Grant exudes sincerity. His heart is genuine. His knowledge is authentic. To know and work with Jeff Grant is a blessing.”

– Toni Quest

“Jeff is an incredible advocate for criminal justice reform and is very passionate about helping others. I have watched him grow over the years as he helped build a community around him. His radio show has brought a lot of awareness about the injustice surrounding mass incarceration in this country. I was honored to be a guest on his show and discuss my transformation after serving 10 years in prison. Jeff is a shining example of how we all evolve and learn from our mistakes.

– Aaron Kinzel

“There is one school of thought that says “people never change,” but I don’t believe that. Witnessing the core evolutions in Jeff Grant from close quarters over the span of many years, I can say with assurance that Jeff is living proof of the contrary. The strength, courage and steadfastness in Jeff’s recovery and his transition into a new life is truly inspirational. I am proud to claim Jeff as a friend and colleague, and to watch his ministry and other service work take shape and expand, as he dedicates himself to the embodiment of his faith.”

– William Nix, Esq,

“Jeff has transformed the way I think about myself and others. Before my time working at Progressive Prison Ministries, I spent many years defining myself and others by their decisions, failing to consider what factors led them to the choice itself. Engaging with Jeff’s practice and the larger justice-impacted community has changed my life forever. I’ve never met kinder, more thoughtful, inspirational people. It’s been a blessing to be surrounded by authentic people who are dedicated to growing from their mistakes. This community has inspired me to be kinder to myself, untether myself from my past instead of overanalyze it, and most importantly, realize I am never alone.

– Chloe Coppola

“Jeff and the support group have been instrumental in assisting me as I am going through the pretrial process.  Knowing that you are not alone has been incredibly valuable to me during this journey.  Moreover, Jeff has shown compassion and grace to me, which has at times been missing during these dark days.  His calming demeanor and steady guidance is a true blessing.  Most importantly, he is a testament that there is an end in sight and things will eventually get better.”

– Jason

“I heard Jeff Grant on the Rich Roll podcast about a month ago and knew I had to contact him, if nothing else, just to thank him for opening up and helping me realize that there are many others going through difficult situations…many, much worse than mine. I emailed Jeff a day or two after the podcast thanking him, and he responded immediately to let me know I could contact him at any time to discuss my situation.  That was an invitation I couldn’t pass up.  A day or two later I sent him a long email telling him what i had done, the guilt and shame I felt (on the podcast, Jeff clarifies the difference between guilt and shame, something I hadn’t contemplated before), that I was beating myself up daily for the mistakes I had made.

Once again, Jeff responded immediately with five points: 1. He thanked me for trusting him, 2. He told me he did a lot of the same stuff, 3.  He told me there is always a way through, 4. He asked me to join his Monday night support group, telling me it’s the isolation that destroys us, and lastly, 5. he asked me how old my kids were.  I immediately felt hope, and took him up on his offer to join the support group.”

– Tim H.

“I had the fortunate opportunity to speak with Jeff Grant some months ago. I currently have a situation where I am facing a prison sentence. The terms are still being negotiated as to what type of sentence may occur. However, to navigate through this system can be quite overwhelming and complex. Someone (usually your lawyer) explains the system in a way that you may or may not understand. I have discovered that most people charged with white collar crimes have no idea of the complexity of the criminal justice system. It is so far removed from our daily lives and most of us don’t even know of anyone who may have been accused of this type of criminal activity.  Now all of a sudden, we are thrust into a complex legal system of which we have not only no say but no understanding of how it works.  What we think of as a logical sequence of events is not how the judicial system works.  So, to better understand this complex system, Rev Jeff Grant has worked with me to help me look out for my family and myself as to the possible consequences of each and every move or decision that is made. He helped me understand the ramifications of my decisions as my lawyer presented them to me. I came to understand the long term positive or negative effects of some of the negotiations being made on my behalf by my lawyer.

Needless to say, to attempt to navigate through this interwoven complex system without any guidance or insight, or only though just the lens of your legal counsel, may not be in your best interest. Therefore, Rev Jeff Grant can give you sound advice and from an independent and experienced point of view, keep you grounded, and keep you on the best possible path given the circumstances. His resource pool is phenomenal, as he has assisted people from all walks of life from all over the country. You have nothing to lose by speaking with him and having the opportunity for him and his team to share their insight and wisdom with you.”

– Jay Spina

“It is hard to believe I have only known for only seven months now.  Jeff and the support group have provided me a lot of hope and support in a short time.  When I first reached out to Jeff I was in a dark place. Even though I pleaded guilty to wire fraud over 13 years ago I was still ashamed of everything.  I was ashamed not only of what I had done, but what I put my family through. I was ashamed that I made so many bad decisions.

Until I met Jeff, I was trying to run away or hide from my past.  I didn’t want to think about it too much. I try to just keep moving forward.  However, it felt like I was carrying a 50 lb weight on my back. My shame prevented me from enjoying and savoring all the good things that happened in my life.  The shame prevented me from being hopeful about the future.  

After a conversation with Jeff, I started attending the support group meetings.  At first, the support group meetings felt strange. However, I have come to rely on the meetings for strength and support.  There is no judgment at the meetings and everyone there is trying to support each other. Most important of all, I now realize that I do not need live my life in shame.  There is a quote from Brene Brown which reflects what I have received from Jeff and my fellow travelers of the support group: ‘If we share our story with someone who responds with empathy and understanding, shame can’t survive.'”

– S.P., California

“Jeff’s solid spiritual core has been forged in the fire of his life experiences – from his early high flying legal career to subsequent incarceration, followed by rebirth and redemption and the tirelessly passionate assembly of his ministry with his loving wife Lynn. Jeff has been extraordinarily generous with his time, talents and wisdom. He is a most perceptive and discerning listener, and incisive sounding board always grounded in solution-oriented spiritual and practical counsel. He has been of invaluable assistance in helping me navigate my own personal journey in recovery and reconstruction. Whereas I was once homeless, in the throes of addiction, facing daunting legal circumstances and estranged from my children, I am now in a stable home, self-supporting, repairing the family relationships that once seemed beyond salvation and an active contributing member in service to my community. This would not have been possible without Jeff’s ministry and guidance for which I am immensely and forever grateful.”

– Michael K.

“I received an invitation from Jeff Grant of Progressive Prison Ministries in August 2016 to attend a White Collar Support Group meeting. I was reluctant and hesitant about accepting the invitation because I had my reservation about what this group was going to tell me about serving time in a Federal Prison and the challenges and difficulties post incarceration. Being a convicted felon, I have endured a multitude of challenges post incarceration. To be frank, incarceration was the easy part and the biggest challenge was how I was going to reintegrate myself into society once I got home and how I was seen as “enriched uranium” by others. I left federal prison psychologically and emotionally broken, I was a wreck! I was released from federal prison in the summer of 2008 and it took me seven years to deal with the psychological carnage and to obtain inner peace. Looking back at this journey I wish that there would have been a White Collar Support Group when I got out of prison and my pain curve would not have been so steep. Getting on Jeff’s call was a breath of fresh air as I was able to meet other men and women who had endured the shame and embarrassment of being a convicted felon. Jeff brings a spiritual component to his group which in my opinion is critical as it helps with the healing process. I applaud Jeff for creating this organization as it helps convicted felons who have been ostracized by society in providing ministerial counseling, empathy, compassion and support. I have met some incredible people in this group and I look forward to being an active participant for many years.”

– Douglas Mairena