The California Board of Parole Hearings voted Tuesday to support Time for Change Executive Director Kim Carter’s pardon request for her previous criminal convictions. Her request now awaits approval from Gov. Jerry Brown.
“This is my life, and I got one chance,” Carter told the board on Tuesday morning. “If I’ve made up for my crimes, I’d like for you to acknowledge it.”
Carter was released from state prison on parole on April 17, 1994, after battling drug addiction. She’s gone on to help thousands of women rehabilitate themselves through her nonprofit Time for Change Foundation.
Carter told IECN on Monday that receiving a pardon by the state will assure her status as a “first class citizen” and provide her with opportunities she didn’t have before.
“It’s been constant humiliation facing these institutional barriers that have limited my growth,” she said. “If I get pardoned, the sky will be the limit.”
Individuals usually pardoned by the Governor are those that have been released from prison or parole for over 10 years without further criminal convictions, according to the Office of the Governor. Historically governors have granted very few pardons.
Many local, county, and state law enforcement and public officials attended the hearing to speak on Carter’s behalf.
Assemblywoman Eloise Reyes (D-Grand Terrace) and Senator Connie Leyva (D-Chino) hailed Carter as an amazing woman that has exemplified social change and leadership.
“For many, when they meet Kim they find hope,” expressed Reyes. “She speaks to the power of change.”
Dawn Davison, former warden of the California Institution for Women (CIW), said she believes “wholeheartedly” in Carter’s mission
“Kim left prison and she turned right around and came back again,” Davidson said. “She asked, ‘Can I come back in and share with the women the resources I have on the outside?’ So she tirelessly came in every day to share resources. It’s really a testament to her spirit, her determination, and leadership. She is a beacon of hope.”