The Graduates, founded in 2012, is a New Orleans-based performing arts organization comprised of former members of the Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women (LCIW) Drama Club. Current ensemble members include: Taece Defillo, Carry Emerson, Jackie Hall, Ivy Matthis and Fox Rich. The Graduates and the LCIW Drama Club are co-directed by Kathy Randels of ArtSpot Productions and Ausettua AmorAmenkum of Kumbuka African Drum & Dance Collective and were initially co-produced by these two companies. Their performances focus on the experiences that women from Louisiana have when they interact with the prison system and are designed to move and motivate audiences to become active in helping to end mass incarceration in Louisiana.  The Graduates Rising are Robert Rauschenberg Racial Justice Fellows and their work has been supported by Alternate ROOTS, The Mellon Foundation, and Emerging Philanthropists of New Orleans.  Visit graduatesrising.org and our Won’t Bow Down! Facebook page for more information.