Terrance Turner

Vice Chair

Terrance Turner is one of the rare voices – thinking, speaking, writing, and delivering the stories and messages that few can… from a place of experience. Terrance is a philosopher, motivational/inspirational speaker, writer, author, spoken word artist/poet and more. Hailing from the City of Destiny, (Tacoma, Washington) Terrance’s path is one that combines tragedy with triumph. A former gang-member, Terrance is reputed as a natural leader, who often walks alone. But before learning how to walk alone, Terrance found his self, serving a Juvenile-Life sentence in Washington State’s Juvenile Intuitions (from age 15-21). And this destination would inevitably transform Terrance’s life trajectory.

In 1997 while incarcerated, Terrance was introduced to the Gateways for Incarcerated Youth founded by, Dr. Carol Minugh a professor at The Evergreen State College. This program was the pivotal moment for great change in Terrance’s life. Through this program Terrance, as well as many other youth, were able to begin their conquest towards upper education earning their bachelor’s Degree and beyond.

During his endless quest for knowledge through post-secondary education Terrance reinvented himself, and as a result of finding his voice, he began to use his voice through various mediums and efforts to get his message of “change” not only to those incarcerated with him, but outside the confines of imprisonment as well.

By the ages of 19 and 20, Terrance had written and published two books: Incarceration (1999) and Through the Eyes of The Judged (2000) (required reading if you are a student taking the Gateways Class at The Evergreen State College) while still incarcerated. Terrance was released from his six year sentence in late August of 2000 and ever since, his life-work has consisted of shamelessly sharing his testimony and teaching/lecturing at hundreds of schools during the last 20 years his life. For Terrance, giving back is inextricably part of who he is – there is no separation.