Striving to be Part of the Solution
Number of years empowering 3K women.
Number of graduates who secure meaningful employment within one year of release (vs. 54% nationally).
With a 5.4% recidivism rate, our graduates are 91% less likely to return to prison.
While volunteering for a prison ministries program, Televerde founder Ron Bell saw an opportunity to help women build business skills while serving their sentences. He believed this would lead to productive career opportunities for them upon their release.
Enter Jim Hooker–a former IBM executive with an entrepreneurial spirit; a passion for technology, sales, and marketing; and a desire to challenge the status quo. When Ron introduced Jim to the business model, he loved the idea, eventually launching Televerde in 1994 as a “force for good.” Jim spoke about his path to Televerde in his 2018 TEDx Talk, “My Journey from Privilege to Prison.”
Since Televerde’s inception, the company has continued to grow and evolve, staffing a 650+ global workforce.
Televerde has 10 engagement centers, seven of which are staffed entirely by females incarcerated inside three U.S. prison facilities.
Televerde Foundation Leadership
Michelle was recently named a World-Changing Woman in Conscious Business by Conscious Company magazine. Her journey of transformation was also featured by Forbes in a two-part interview. Michelle is a strong customer champion with a tireless commitment to using business as a force for good.
Michelle earned her MBA from Arizona State University where she also serves as an Advisory Board Member for the Center for Services Leadership. She holds multiple certifications from SiriusDecisions. Michelle is an avid TED fan and organized and hosted TEDxPerryvilleCorrectional, the first TEDx to be held in an Arizona prison. The event looked behind the curtain of incarceration to show the potential that exists in providing second chances.
Michelle dedicates a significant amount of her free time giving back to her local community by volunteering for the Phoenix Rescue Mission and Athena International. She is a member of the National Association of Female Executives and MBA Women International.
Director of Programs
Become a Volunteer Today
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the world, the families of individuals who are incarcerated have been hit hard.
We realize this is an unlikely group for which to ask for support. The incarcerated community is one of the most stigmatized populations in the world–wrongly so.
Having a family member in prison affects multiple domains of life, including financial security, family dynamics, and emotional well-being. The entire family suffers.