A Second-Chance Model That Comes in First

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A CEO and leader of an MEP program for hiring ex-offenders shares his success with other manufacturers.

Laura Putre

JAN 15, 2021

Andrew Jackson, president and CEO of packaging manufacturer Elsons International, looks for the same things in ex-offender job candidates as in candidates without a criminal record: a team player, a willingness to learn and work hard, and a good attitude. And one additional quality: “We just want to know that you know what you did,” he says. “You paid your debt to society, and you want to have a chance like everybody else. We’re looking for somebody who made a mistake, knows they made a mistake, and has a decent story to tell.”

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Senior Editor Laura Putre manages IW contributors and covers leadership as it applies to executive best practices, corporate culture, corporate responsibility, growth strategies, managing and training talent, and strategic planning. A former newspaper journalist, Laura has written for SlateThe Root, the Chicago Tribune, the Guardian and many other publications.

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