Restorative Justice in Action: A Fair Chance Hiring Conversation

Business & Entrepreneurship
Community & Civics
Tourism & Hospitality

Event Details


Day 2 - September 10, 2022

Join Tess Hart of Triple Bottom Brewery, Muhammad of Down North Pizza & The Down North Foundation, Akeil Robertson of Mural Art’s Guild Program, and Alexis Pugh of HR Demands in this session “Restorative Justice in Action: A Fair Chance Hiring Conversation”. These community leaders and business owners will discuss the importance of fair chance hiring in the city of Philadelphia and nationally, and the direct impact it has on the community. Fair Chance hiring is a practice built on the philosophy that everyone deserves fair consideration for the jobs they are qualified for. 

Speaker Information
Tess Hart Headshot

Tess Hart

Tess is co-founder and CEO of Triple Bottom Brewing — a small batch craft brewery with a fair chance mission in Philadelphia, PA. Triple Bottom opened in 2019 and is now the only Certified B Corp brewery in the state of Pennsylvania. Before starting Triple Bottom, she worked in Washington, DC, as a strategy consultant to foundations, nonprofits, and social enterprises. She has an MBA from the Yale School of Management and Master of Environmental Management from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.

Akeil Robertson-Jowers Headshot

Akeil Robertson-Jowers

Akeil Robertson-Jowers is an artist, educator, curator, student, returning citizen, and active member of the reentry community. Akeil is an ambassador and a skilled communicator able to bridge the gap between disparate peoples. Akeil is deft at navigating the intersection of social analysis and empirical observations derived from lived experiences. His unique position as both an insider and interpreter drives us past the traditional dichotomies that embroil us in an adversarial dialogue and gives him the ability to offer opinions and insights not previously gleaned. Akeil is an multimedia artist, able to extend those skills to all he comes in contact with to create maps, prose, and bridges toward new thoughts and practices in criminal justice thinking and solutions.

Akeil has been a partner in several projects including the Inaugural Philadelphia District Attorney Office Artists in Residency, Reading Work and Art For Justice Led Collaborative Web Project to forward Abolition Studies, and Assistant Mural Artist for several years.

Muhammad Abdul-Hadi Headshot

Muhammad Abdul-Hadi

Muhammad Abdul-Hadi is the founder and owner of Down North Pizza, the mission-driven restaurant that exclusively hires formerly incarcerated individuals and serves up pies with a purpose in the Strawberry Mansion community in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 

Down North Pizza is the culmination of Abdul-Hadi’s 13-year vision as a serial entrepreneur. It’s a concept that has long been ingrained in him; a place where he’s contributing to the economic improvement of underserved communities through excellent food and quality customer service. “What drives me is creating opportunities for the people around me and giving them the tools and resources to succeed. Seeing staff laugh knowing they come from the same struggle but have a life to look forward to and build.” 

Through fair wages, innovative hiring practices, and community building, Abdul-Hadi is looking to reduce recidivism rates in the Black community on a wider scale. 

Alexis Pugh Headshot

Alexis Pugh

As Senior Director of Workforce and Ventures, Alexis lead youth workforce and career exploration at Steppingstone Scholars. She joined Steppingstone Scholars from Project HOME where she spent 7 years. She designed and implemented the agency’s first workforce program for people with severe mental health. While leading the charge for performance and evaluation system. She has focused on program development throughout her career, and has had operating experience in a variety of fields, including manufacturing, customer service, and small business start-up operations.

Prior to Project HOME she provided operations leadership in diverse settings with Impact Service and Urban Affairs Coalition. Where she earned certification and specialized focus on Re-Entry working with a diverse population of people with a variety of barriers to employment. In this capacity she was also responsible for developing partnerships with businesses and placing students in internships and jobs. She has worked with students with the specific aim to engage students in meaningful career services and internship experiences while building industry partnerships.

Alexis is Principal Consultant for HR Demands a private consulting company that offers Training, HR needs along with immersion training for Diversity and Inclusion. She is also Executive Director for Undivided Courage transitional housing for aged out foster care youth ages 18-24.