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Atlanta Falcons

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David Lee Windecher

As a former affiliated member of a well-known criminal street gang and a current public defender, David Lee Windecher understands how recidivism happens and how to prevent it.

Windecher understands the difficulty of being low-income and under-resourced as an immigrant. Windecher grew up on the streets of Miami-Dade County, where he was arrested 13 times throughout his youth and incarcerated for over seven months as a juvenile.

Windecher's struggles formulated his passion for criminal justice reform. He advocates for restorative justice, an end to mass incarceration, and redress for racial inequity in the criminal justice system. Inspired by his street name, "Red," David Lee Windecher founded RED (Rehabilitation Enables Dreams) because of this passion that stems from first-hand, personal experience.

David Lee Windecher and RED work to educate program participants by developing their social, civic and financial literacy through task-oriented learning, engaging workshops, and interactive educational modules. After completing the 12-month program curriculum, student records are expunged, and they are referred to opportunities of employment and/or higher education institutions.

Rehabilitation Enables Dreams (RED) was founded in March 2015. The organization strives to help at-risk youth that have been entangled in the criminal justice system. Their goal is to find a way to break out of the vicious and coercive cycle of systemic mass incarceration and legal oppression. As someone who has experienced this harsh reality, Windecher's vision for RED is to provide offenders with the proper tools and education that they need to break this cycle.

In a formal sense, Windecher has been involved in this work for over a decade since he started law school at the John Marshall Law School in Atlanta, Georgia, where he earned a Juris Doctorate degree in 2012. Informally, Windecher has been laying the groundwork for this mission by gaining experience and an understanding of the fallacies of the criminal justice system ever since he was an at-risk youth himself.