True justice is actually an act and application of love in the public sector (systems). Love, language and the opportunity to continue to define what love looks like in our communities and systems is our #1 focus at Northwest Credible Messenger.
Politicizing Our Youth
Through this project with our Youth Peer Leaders we worked to get our communities energized about voting and their contributions to the political process that can translate to effective community-level transformation.
Exercising Healthy Masculinity prepares the individual to develop transformative and positive— romantic, familial, and platonic— relationships and supports the individual’s emotional and mental well-being.
Gang Intervention (GRIP)
Through partnership Credible Messenger Programming expanded from 1 juvenile program in King County into a Statewide process.
Youth Young Adult
Culturally responsive behavioral health support to BIPOC youth, focusing on healing and wellness.
Comprehensive support for individuals returning from incarceration, focusing on building up their existing skills and resources.
Our Areas of Focus
What We Do
Utilizing the Credible Messengers Model, we are focused on cultivating racial justice through the proactive reinforcement of policies, practices, attitudes, and actions that produce equitable power, access, opportunities, treatment, impacts and outcomes for Black and Brown leaders, empowering young people and strengthening our impacted communities to collective success.
Our mission is to empower new and emerging Black and Brown community leaders, returning citizens and community-rooted organizations through Capacity Building – teaching the tools to build a seat at the table, Policy Advocacy – building acumen for lasting transformative change, and Positive Youth Justice – investing in the next generation of Black and Brown leadership.
Become a Credible Messenger.
An approach to healing as a transformative process through a mentoring model for youth.
Find out how to become a Credible Messenger here.
The Credible Messenger Mentoring Movement (CM3)
A Bridge to The Movement
In the 1980s, Eddie Ellis, a former Black Panther serving a twenty-five to life sentence at New York’s Green Haven prison, first used the term “credible messenger” to describe the role that formerly incarcerated men and women would need to play upon their release from prison.
Ellis, convicted in 1969 through the FBI’s COINTELPRO activities, observed the influx of young men entering the prison system. Seeing that more than 70 percent of these young men came from just seven neighborhoods in New York City, Ellis realized two things: first, that these young people were growing up in neighborhood conditions that set them on a track towards incarceration from a young age; second, that these young people had lacked the guidance, influence and mentorship of elders, many of whom had been incarcerated.
Ellis, already an influential writer and thinker, challenged his peers to go back into these neighborhoods upon their release from prison, to be the “Credible Messengers” to young people who wouldn’t listen to anyone else.
The Legacy Continues
Clinton Lacey spent 25 years working in community and systems to transform the movement into a promising practice, growing the span of impact from a single NYC probation program to an international movement.
Fun Fact: Eddie Ellis was his professional Mentor. Clint left his work in systems to lead the National Credible Messenger Mentoring Movement CM3.
Antonio “King Tone” Fernandez
Antonio Fernandez was the leader of the New York chapter of the Almighty Latin Kings. He has worked directly with organizations and government agencies in Washington, DC, New Jersey, New York City, Spain, and Ecuador to redirect their energies toward community building.
Antonio uses his life story as cautionary tale and a message about self-transformation
Antonio Fernandez, left, and Clinton Lacy, right.
There Is POWER In UNITY
Being impacted by systems and feeling the impacts of not just the stigma associated with system contact but the hurdles professionally, Jason became laser focused on helping others he seen being impacted the way he too had.
This resulted in a career focused on Capacity Building and through CM3, Jason has been able to utilize his position locally to empower many others in advancing their leadership and vision for their work.