Co-sponsor: Institute for Research on Women, Gender & Sexualities at Columbia University (IRWGS) Beth Richie, University of Illinois at Chicago Professor of African American Studies, Gender and Women’s Studies, Criminology, Law and Justice, and Sociology Beth Richie is engaged in several research projects designed to explore the relationship between violence against women in low-income African American communities and violence. The specific focus of one study is girls who are both violent and perpetrators of violence. Another project is looking at the factors that influence recidivism and re-arrest rates for women and young people being released from a large urban jail. A third project is concerned with the public policy and social factors that lead to the rise in incarceration rates of women and conditions of confinement once they are sentenced. Currently Dr. Richie is leading a multi-million dollar research sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation researching women and youth issues at Rikers Island Correctional Facility. She was the recipient of three major awards: the National Advocacy Award by the Department of Health and Health and Human Services, Office of Violence Prevention; the Audre Lorde Legacy Award of the Union Institute stemming from her work with the National Network for Women in Prison; and the Visionary Award Of the Violence Intervention Project.