Ernest Drucker, Ph.D., Chairman
Ernest Drucker is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Family and Social Medicine, Montefiore Medical Center/Albert Einstein College of Medicine; Adjunct Professor of Epidemiology at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health; Senior Research Associate and Scholar in Residence at John Jay College of Criminal Justice of The City University of NY, and on the teaching faculty of the Bard Prison Initiative. He is licensed as a Clinical Psychologist in NY State and conducts research in AIDS, drug policy, and prisons and is active in public health and human rights efforts in the US and abroad.
For 25 years (1980 - 2005) he was Director of the Division of Public Health and Policy Research at Montefiore/Einstein. He founded Montefiore's 1000 patient drug treatment program in 1970 and served as its Director until 1990. He has been an NIH funded principal investigator since 1991 and is author of over 100 peer reviewed scientific articles, newspaper and magazine pieces, edited collections and chapters, and textbooks. He was founding Associate Editor of The International Journal of Drug Policy; founder and Editor in Chief (with John Booth Davies) of Addiction Research and Theory (1993 - 2005); and is the founding Editor in Chief of the open access Harm Reduction Journal.
He is a founder (in 1994) and Honored Life Member of the International Harm Reduction Association; and a founder and Chairman of the Board of Doctors of the World / USA, 1993-1997, affiliated with Medicins du Monde, France. He has been a Fellow of the Lindesmith Center at the Open Society Institute, a senior Soros Justice Fellow since 2004, and is a 2010- 2011 Senior Specialist in Global Health of the US/Australian Fulbright Program. A Plague of Prisons: The Epidemiology of Mass Incarceration in America, his first book, was published by The New Press in September 2011.
Semi-retired builder, owner and operator of apartment complexes and hotels (www.TheManorGroup.com). Assists son Richard who develops real estate and planned communities in Eastern Europe.
Graduate of University of California - Berkeley, BA '59 with major in economics after two years at Oberlin College and a semester at the National University of Mexico. First in Economics Department and declined full two year masters fellowship at Cambridge to enter world of business.
Finance chairman of Arlen Specter's 1980 state wide senatorial campaign and campaign manager of Luzerne County referendum campaign - both successful. Co-founder with Melvin R. Allen of Project Forward Leap, a twenty-five year program for providing five weeks of educational overnight summer camp annually to about 300 inner city youngsters of academic promise.
By chance was at site when Michael Angelo's "Pieta" was attacked in the Vatican and interceded to stop further damage and to assure that all parts were salvaged. (Shown on front age of New York Times.)
Founder of Central Pennsylvania Syringe Exchange, operating in Lancaster, York and Harrisburg. Supporter of exchange in Reading.
Co-creator and sponsor for twenty-five years of Project Forward Leap that provided three years of academic summer camp on college campuses for thousands of talented middle school youngsters from underprivileged backgrounds.
Sole sponsor of a program of the Hungarian Red Cross that provides bread and milk supplies for up to 5000 Hungarian children who suffer from poverty.
Cosponsor (2002 - 2005) of a state and federally approved prototype methadone program permitting local prescription fulfillment and medical care for stable clients while patients remain under aegis of a regional methadone clinic.
Principal sponsor of the successful effort in 2008 to deregulate the sale of syringes in Pennsylvania.
Publisher of NewsLanc.com, a significant source of accurate news and revelations for its community and the state.
Committed to the concept of the Open Society Foundation that an accurately informed public will make sound policy decisions over the long run.
Melvin R. Allen, Associate Professor of Philosophy at Millersville University of the State System of Higher Education, PA. A.B., Millersville University, J.D., The Dickinson School of Law; Ph.D. candidate in philosophy, Temple University. Additional graduate study at University of Delaware, and research sabbatical at Harvard University. He is a licensed attorney in the state of Pennsylvania. He has considerable experience in labor relations and has been a social activist for his entire adult life.
Influenced by his experiences growing up in inner city Philadelphia, Mr. Allen co-founded Project Forward Leap fourteen years ago and serves as President. Project Forward Leap is a supplemental program for approximately 240 talented inner city youngsters which starts in the fifth grade and provides them with five weeks of overnight academic study on a unversity campus for three consecutive summers and tutorial and guidance assistance on weekends during the school year.
Mr. Allen is a co-founder of Common Sense for Drug Policy.
David Borden, Board Member
David Borden is founder and Executive Director of StoptheDrugWar.org (known for much of its history as DRCNet, the Drug Reform Coordination Network). Borden played the leading role in pioneering use of the Internet for education and organizing in drug policy reform after founding DRCNet in late 1993.
Since 2000, Mr. Borden has overseen DRCNet's work on the Higher Education Act Reform Campaign, an effort to repeal a federal law that denies students financial aid because of drug convictions, and he has initiated programs including the John W. Perry Fund scholarship program and the Out from the Shadows international conference series. In August 2003, Mr. Borden sent an open letter to the District of Columbia's chief judge, Rufus G. King, explaining his decision to refuse to report for jury service as a protest of the drug war, an action which was covered by the Washington Post. He has written over 160 editorials on drug policy, and publishes DRCNet's Prohibition in the Media blog.
Mr. Borden earned an A.B. with honors in Astrophysical Sciences from Princeton University in 1988, and completed an M.M. in Jazz Composition from New England Conservatory in 1990. He is a native of Englewood, New Jersey, one of the first communities in the state to achieve racial integration in its school system. Mr. Borden is also a member of the Boards of Directors of Flex Your Rights Foundation and the International Anti-Prohibitionist League, and of the Students for Sensible Drug Policy Council of Advisors.
Balázs Dénes, JD, Board Member
Balázs Dénes is a Hungarian lawyer and drug policy expert.
Mr. Dénes obtained his law degree in 1998 in Budapest, Hungary, and since then has been working for the HCLU. He served as the Drug Policy Program Director of the organization, and since the fall of 2004, he has serve as the 2nd Executive Director of the HCLU.
Mr. Dénes is a 2003-2004 Columbia University/PILI Fellow, the founding secretary of the Hungarian Harm Reduction Association, a member of the steering committee of the Eurasian Harm Reduction Network and a Trustee of the Public Interest Law Foundation.
He has been a member of the Budapest Bar Association since 2002. He lives in Budapest, Hungary, and he is a frequently interviewed expert by the Hungarian media on drug policy, harm reduction and human rights issues.
Author of Drug Crazy and The China Syndrome, Mike Gray grew up in Indiana and graduated from Purdue University with a degree in engineering. In 1962, he formed his own film company in Chicago, which produced the award winning documentaries American Revolution and The Murder of Fred Hampton. Since moving to Los Angeles, he wrote, directed, and produced feature films and series of television. Mr. Gray was also a noted speaker on the drug war and appeared on several major news programs such as CNN and Nightline to discuss the drug war, and he wrote for Rolling Stone Magazine about drug issues. Mr. Gray passed away in the summer of 2013.
Kris Krane, Board Member
Kris Krane is the executive director of Students for Sensible Drug Policy, the leading organization working to mobilize students to change punitive drug policies, with active chapters on 120 college campuses throughout the United States and Canada. Before joining the SSDP staff, Mr. Krane served as the Associate Director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, where he organized NORML chapters and planned national conferences and seminars, including the organization's first ever student activist training workshop.
Mr. Krane graduated magna cum laude from American University in May 2000 with an honors degree in political science, culminating with an honors thesis entitled "The War on Drugs: A Case Study in the Escalation of Failed Moral Policy." While in college, he gained experience in international policy while interning for the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI) in Rome and the Public Interest Law Initiative in Transitional Societies (PILI) in New York City.
Kris Krane has been quoted in national newspapers including the New York Times, the Washington Post, Roll Call, USA Today, and the Chronicle of Higher Education. He has also been a featured guest on television news programs including Fox News Weekend Live and Today in New York, and has been featured on National Public Radio, Court TV Radio, Wisconsin Public Radio, and The WWRL Morning Show with Armstrong Williams.
Doug McVay, Board Member
Doug McVay is an activist, writer, researcher, and speaker with a long history in drug policy reform. He is the host of the radio program Century Of Lies, a production of the Drug Truth Network that is distributed by the Pacifica Foundation Radio Network. Doug can be followed on Twitter by following @DrugPolicyFacts, @DougMcVay, and @Thought2Act. Doug is the editor of Drug War Facts and maintains the Common Sense family of websites, including: CSDP, Drug War Facts, Drug War Distortions, Managing Chronic Pain, and Addict In The Family. Doug first became active in drug policy reform efforts when he organized a NORML chapter at the University of Iowa in 1983. In 1984, Doug went to Oregon to work with other activists on a ballot measure campaign. Though it failed to make the ballot that year, Doug returned in 1985 and went on to work fulltime with the Oregon Marijuana Initiative/Ballot Measure Five campaign as their petitioning coordinator and assistant director. (That measure was voted on in the 1986 general election, and was defeated.) While in Oregon Doug met, was trained by, and worked closely with noted author and activist Jack Herer, who became his mentor and life-long friend. After that, Doug moved to Washington, DC to go to work for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) as their Activists/Projects Coordinator from 1987 to 1990. In 1989, he co-founded and began working with the Cannabis Action Network (CAN). In addition to his role on CSDP's Board, Doug is a member of the Board of Directors of Cannabis Action Network and a member of the Advisory Board for Students for Sensible Drug Policy. A court-qualified expert witness on the subjects of marijuana use, sales and cultivation, Doug has testified in both State and Federal courts in the U.S.
An mp3 recording of McVay's speech at the 2006 NORML conference is available for download. The audio begins with an introduction by David Nott, President of the Reason Foundation.