The Value of Connecting with Employers: Resources for Success


Monday, February 26, 2024
2:15 PM - 3:15 PM
Session Type: Workshop

The workshop will consist of an employer using second chance workers, a representative from the critical labor coalition and a trade association with a robust second chance program. The goal of the workshop will be to explain the need to connect the APPA and employer community, ways to get involved and have an open discussion of “next steps”


Harley Tanner Blakeman
Founder & CEO, Honest Jobs

Harley Blakeman is the Founder & CEO of Honest Jobs, a platform to help people with criminal records find better jobs faster. He spent 14 months in prison as a teenager, so the mission is personal. He helps over 1,300 employers nationwide give people with past convictions a fair chance.

Misty Chally
Executive Director, Critical Labor Coalition

Misty Chally is the CEO of Capitol Solutions, a government relations firm representing 22 franchisee associations on tax-, healthcare-, and labor-related issues. She is also the Executive Director of the Critical Labor Coalition, a 501c(4) she formed to address the nation’s critical labor shortage, which includes connecting the second chance community with employers.

Dontavious Drake
Workforce Development Manager, National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation

Dontavious Drake is a seasoned reentry professional with a diverse background in criminal justice and rehabilitation. Having served as a Parole Officer in Georgia, Dontavious supervised clients across all levels, gaining valuable insights into the challenges faced by individuals reintegrating into society. As a reentry program coordinator, he played a pivotal role in establishing reentry programs at Georgia's first facility dedicated to providing comprehensive support for individuals returning from state prisons to the Atlanta metropolitan area. Currently, Dontavious serves as Workforce Development Manager at the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation. In this role, he leads the implementation of the foundation’s federally funded reentry programs in Delaware, Michigan, Ohio, and Texas. Dontavious’ commitment to supporting individuals in their journey toward successful reintegration is evident through strategic leadership and dedication to creating meaningful opportunities for those seeking a fresh start.