Collaboration From the Inside Out with Renaldo Hudson

FirstFollowers gathering on August 1, 2023

25400 Aug 1 2023 gathering nofilter

Sep 19, 2023


45 E University Ave
Illinois Terminal, Floor 4
Champaign, IL 61820


Free, open to the public
RSVP is required

An Envisioning Justice Activation Event
Hosted by FirstFollowers
Free food and drinks provided during the event

This event is great for people of all ages, families, and young people.

Please join us as we highlight the importance of including perspectives from individuals serving long-term sentences in our pursuit of a more just future.

Artist and organizer Renaldo Hudson will share his experiences as a system-impacted individual and emphasize the need for diverse voices in conversations about creating a world without mass incarceration.

Renaldo Hudson at FirstFollowers cr Bourema Ouedraogo

Renaldo Hudson shares his story with guests. (Photo by Bourema Ouedraogo)

EC3 A4666 Small Group discussions credit Bourema Ouedraogo

FirstFollowers facilitates small group discussions about key questions raised during Renaldo's talk. (Photo by Bourema Ouedraogo)

More About...

Renaldo Hudson
Renaldo Huduson Headshot recent scaled

Renaldo Hudson is the Education Director and community organizer with the Illinois Prison Project, and has focused his work on ending perpetual punishment in Illinois.

After being sentenced to death row, he worked for 37 years while incarcerated in the Illinois Department of Corrections to change the mindset of incarcerated people, as well as staff, regarding what rehabilitation should look like and how to focus attention on true rehabilitation.

Renaldo is responsible for founding the groundbreaking Building Block Program, a transformational program run by incarcerated people within the Illinois Department of Corrections. Renaldo’s work has been in Beecher and media outlets throughout the state, and the subject of the documentary Stateville Calling.


FirstFollowers’ mission is to build strong and peaceful communities by providing support, guidance, and hope to formerly incarcerated people and their loved ones through peer mentorship.

They offer:

  • A safe stigma free environment
  • Peer mentoring
  • Assistance with employment searches
  • Workforce development for emerging adults
  • Advocacy for individuals with felony convictions
  • Family reunification
  • Service referrals

Follow FirstFollowers on Facebook | Instagram | YouTube | Website

Juneteenth 2023

FirstFollowers booth at a 2023 Juneteenth event.


CityView Events and Meetings Center makes your occasion one to remember. Located in the heart of downtown Champaign on the 4th floor of Illinois Terminal, CityView is readily accessible by car, bus, train, bike, walking, cab, Lyft, or Uber, with ample parking nearby. CityView’s wrap-around windows offer unparalleled views, day or night. 

This event is presented in partnership with FirstFollowers and is part of the 2023 Envisioning Justice Activation Series.


Illinois Humanities is collaborating with community organizations in six Illinois towns to host free public arts and educational programs for all ages. These six events featuring the artists, educators, and organizers behind Envisioning Justice RE:ACTION create opportunities to for us to reimagine timely conversations about justice, safety, community, and belonging.

Learn more about the 2023 Envisioning Justice Activation Series and our Envisioning Justice program at

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