ARC is a movement of formerly incarcerated individuals, advocates, and allies committed to transforming the justice system and improving reentry outcomes.

WHERE IT ALL BEGAN.  While ARC was founded in 2013, its roots can be traced back to 2003, when founder Scott Budnick first stepped into Barry J. Nidorf Juvenile Hall. At the time, Scott worked in the film industry as Executive Vice President of Green Hat Films, where he produced numerous successful comedies, including The Hangover series. A friend in the industry invited Scott to attend a writing workshop at the juvenile hall through the InsideOUT Writers (IOW) program.

Scott sat alongside incarcerated youth in the Compound, including some as young as 15 years old, who were facing adult prison sentences - including one boy who was facing more than 200 years in prison. In their writings, he learned of the terrible decisions they had made, but also of their childhoods, marked by trauma, violence, and neglect. That day, Scott committed to mentoring incarcerated youth, and has since conducted regular writing classes in the facility.

Over the years, as Scott's students were released from juvenile halls and prisons across California, he witnessed many of them returning to incarceration, unable to overcome the challenges of reentry due to the lack of community and support that led them into the system in the first place.

ARC began as an annual camping trip bringing together a few dozen formerly incarcerated young people with positive mentors to offer encouragement, guidance, and resources. Today, the Coalition has grown into a support and advocacy network of more than 300 members, and hundreds of volunteer mentors and allies, committed to helping one another through reentry, and advocating for a fairer criminal justice system.


THE COALITION TODAY.  ARC serves more than 300 formerly incarcerated men and women, who commit to living crime-free, gang-free and drug-free; enrolling in school, working or actively searching for work; and being of service to their community and the ARC network. To help members successfully transition back into the community, ARC provides counseling and case management, mentorship opportunities, supportive housing, and employment and education assistance. 

Through its unique policy advocacy work, ARC mobilizes and empowers formerly incarcerated individuals and their families to participate in efforts to reform the justice system. ARC’s advocacy model develops members as leaders, amplifies their voice, and increases civic engagement of those most affected by incarceration to improve community health across California. 

The success of ARC’s Member Services model is evidenced by the incredibly low recidivism rate of members – less than five percent, compared to California’s recidivism rate of more than 54 percent. ARC’s advocacy and awareness-building efforts have also been exceptionally successful, leading to numerous critical reforms in California’s justice system, including five key pieces of legislation that significantly improved the way the system treats young people. 

Scott Budnick is the most extraordinary force in the state of California on badly needed incarceration and justice reform.
— Dr. Robert K. Ross, President of The California Endowment

ARC STAFF

CAITLIN AHEARN
Development Director

ZEARA ALVAREZ-VERDUGO
Housing Manager

CHERYL BONACCI
Program Director

SCOTT BUDNICK
Founder and President

CARLOS CERVANTES
Mentorship Coordinator

NORMA CUMPIAN
Life Coach

TONY DELFINO                  Program Coordinator

JOSE GONZALES
Inside Coordinator

BLAIR JAMES
Director of Counseling Services

SAM LEWIS
Senior Member Services Manager

ISAAC LOPEZ
Life Coach

VICTOR J. MALIN JR.  Sacramento Member Coordinator

Wilfredo Lopez                            Life Coach

BEN YANO
Chief of Staff

CHRISTINE MAMMOLITO   Deputy Director

MISTY OKA                     
Executive Coordinator

 

JOHN McCLELLAND          Housing Director

BIKILA OCHOA
Policy Director

 

KENT MENDOZA
Community Relations Coordinator

ADRIAN VASQUEZ
Intake Specialist & Job Developer

 

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Adam Gunther
Philanthropist

Hill Harper
Actor, Author & Philanthropist

Ron Kaye
Attorney
Kaye, McLane, Bednarski & Litt, LLP

Damon Lindelof
Film & Television Writer/Producer

Wendy Meyer Smith, Ph.D., LCSW
Associate Dean
USC School of Social Work

Frank J. Quintero
Principal
The Yucaipa Companies

Lindsay Rachelefsky
Founder and Fundraiser
Sky Advisory Group

Mike Romano
Director
Stanford Law School Three Strikes Project

Jeff Rosenthal
Summit Series

Todd Rubenstein
Lawyer
Morris Yorn

Javier Stauring
Director
Healing Justice Coalition

Darnell Strom
CAA Foundation

Michael Goldstein
Attorney, Goldstein Law Offices
President, Los Angeles County Criminal Courts Bar Association

Michael Stubbs, Chairman
Philanthropist                                      

Franky Carrillo, Vice Chair
Student, Loyola Marymount University

David Muhammad, Vice Chair                
Executive Director Emeritus
The Anti-Recidivism Coalition

Carol Biondi, Secretary
Commissioner
Los Angeles County Commission for Children & Families

Paul Blavin, Treasurer
Philanthropist and Investor

Brent Bolthouse
Bolthouse Productions/The Bungalow

Scott Budnick
Founder and President
The Anti-Recidivism Coalition

Alex Busansky
President
Impact Justice

Elizabeth Calvin
Senior Advocate
Children's Rights Division, Human Rights Watch

Matthew Cate
Executive Director
California State Association of Counties

Charity Chandler
Contract and Grant Manager
Public Health Foundation Enterprises

Robert Downey Jr.
Actor & Activist

Dede Gardner
President
Plan B Entertainment Production Company


ADVISORY BOARD

 

Jonah Hill
Actor & Comedian                                                          

B. Wayne Hughes Jr.
Founder, Serving California

Nasir “Nas” Jones
Recording Artist

Bruce Karatz
Owner
BK Capital LLC

Eric Kessler
Arabella Advisors

Ben Lear
Filmmaker

Greg Propper
Co-Founder, Propper Daley

Rep. Raul Ruiz, M.D.
United States Congressman
for California’s 36th District

Mike Tollin
Film & Television Producer

Anthony Williams
Director of Government Relations
Boeing

James Anderson                                                                                   Founding Member, Anti-Recidivism Coalition(ARC)                             Founder, Los Mayores

Aaron Bergman
Director of Corporate Sponsorships
Communities in Schools Los Angeles

Kafi Blumenfield
Executive Director
Discovery Cube Los Angeles

Mike Brady
President/CEO,
Professional Training Institute, Inc.

Rep. Tony Cardenas
United States Congressman
for California’s 29th District

Common
Recording Artist

Zach Galifianakis
Actor & Comedian

Jake Gyllenhaal
Actor & Activist

Hon. Eric Harmon
Judge, Superior Court of Los Angeles County