We partnered with The Fortune Society (Fortune) on the search for its President & CEO to succeed Joanne Page, who served as its leader for 34 years. Fortune is a service and advocacy nonprofit organization in New York City founded by David Rothenberg in 1967. Its mission is to support successful reentry from prison and promote alternatives to incarceration.
Richards formerly served as the organization’s Deputy Chief Executive Officer, where he has played a critical role in Fortune’s continued growth. In fiscal years 2022 through 2024, Fortune grew significantly and added supervised release in the Bronx and transitional housing in four of the five boroughs, providing community diversion services from arraignment and badly needed housing for homeless formerly incarcerated people.
Search Committee Co-Chair John Eley noted, “The Fortune Society is an extraordinary organization doing critical work. It requires a leader with an unusual mix of compassion, vision, tenacity, management competence and presence. We conducted a national search and discovered, to no one’s surprise, that the best candidate is Stanley Richards. I am confident that Stan will lead Fortune to new heights and I cannot wait to follow his lead.”
Richards is a formerly incarcerated man of color with decades of experience in the criminal justice field.
In 2014, he was recognized by the Obama administration as a Champion of Change for his commitment to helping individuals impacted by the justice system.
Richards was the first formerly incarcerated person to be appointed to the NYC Board of Correction. As Vice Chair of the Board of Correction, in June 2020, he was appointed to lead the Working Group to End Punitive Segregation.
In July 2021, he was appointed to become the First Deputy Commissioner of Programs and Operations at the New York City Department of Correction (NYCDOC). He was the first formerly incarcerated person to serve this second highest position within the NYCDOC, the second largest jail system in the country.
His other appointments include the Independent Commission on New York City Criminal Justice and Incarceration Reform, which released a blueprint for the future of criminal justice in NYC; the Working Group on Design, a subcommittee of the Implementation Task Force, to ensure effective implementation of the “Smaller, Safer, Fairer: A Roadmap to Closing Rikers Island” initiative; the NYC Commission on Community Reinvestment and the Closure of Riker’s Island; and other taskforces on criminal justice issues.
Richards is a graduate of Medaille College, Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business: Institute for Not-For-Profit Management Executive Level Program, and the Robert Wood Johnson Fellowship Program.