Minds in Crisis: Mental Health in American Prisons

Minds in Crisis: Mental Health in American Prisons

Date: March 31, 2021
Time: 6 to 7:15 p.m.
Cost: Free for Museum Members or with Museum Admission
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The U.S. prison population has more than quadrupled over the past four decades, and many of those behind bars are mentally ill. A shortage of mental health treatment options has pushed many people in need of psychiatric care into the pipeline to prison instead. Dr. Christine Montross, author of Waiting for an Echo: The Madness of American Incarceration, and Charles Daniels, director of the Nevada Department of Corrections, will examine this critical problem and discuss solutions.

This program will take place in The Mob Museum’s Historic Courtroom. Dr. Christine Montross will appear via livestream. Charles Daniels will be joining in-person.

If you would like to attend in person, please RSVP. Reservations are not needed to join this program’s livestream.


Purchase a signed copy of Dr. Christine Montross’ book Waiting for an Echo: The Madness of American Incarceration.


Featured Speakers

Charles Daniels, Director, Nevada Department of Corrections  

Charles Daniels, Director, Nevada Department of Corrections


The Nevada Department of Corrections (NDOC) welcomes Charles Daniels who began as our new Director on December 10, 2019. Daniels has been in corrections over 30 years working in various leadership roles. After leaving the Air Force in 1988, Daniels joined the Federal Bureau of Prisons as a correctional officer in California and spent the next 28 years working his way up to complex warden at institutions in Beaumont, Texas (2013-2015) and Terre Haute, Indiana (2015-2016). In between, he served as associate warden and warden at facilities in California, Illinois, and Oregon before moving to Washington, D.C. in 2008 to become the Senior Deputy Assistant to the Director for the Federal Bureau of Prison’s Industries, Education, and Vocational Training Division. He also served as warden for a facility in Colorado. During this time, Daniels led a regional hostage negotiation team and developed an emergency response plan for correctional facilities. Daniels retired from federal service in 2016.

Daniels followed up his long career in federal service with a senior role in the New York City Department of Corrections where he helped manage a $1.8 billion operating budget. Daniels most recently served as Deputy Commissioner of Operations for the Alabama Department of Corrections.

Daniels is a graduate of the Aspen Institute Justice and Society Program, Center for Creative Leadership, and he holds a degree in Criminal Justice.

‘Charles has had a long and respected career as a corrections professional in the state and federal systems,” Governor Sisolak said. “Charles brings more than three decades of knowledge, management experience, and perspective that will bring needed structure, accountability, and reform to the Nevada Department of Corrections. I have full confidence in Charles’ abilities, and I look forward to working with him to improve our state prison system.”

Dr. Christine Montross, Author of Waiting for an Echo: The Madness of American Incarceration  

Dr. Christine Montross, Author of Waiting for an Echo: The Madness of American Incarceration


A 2015 Guggenheim Fellow in Nonfiction, Dr. Christine Montross is Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. She is a practicing inpatient psychiatrist and performs forensic psychiatric examinations. She completed medical school and residency training at Brown University, where she received the Isaac Ray Award in Psychiatry and the Martin B. Keller Outstanding Brown Psychiatry Resident Award.

She received her undergraduate degrees and a Master of Fine Arts in poetry from the University of Michigan, where she also taught writing classes as a lecturer following graduation. She was born and raised in Indianapolis.

Dr. Montross’s first book, Body of Work, was named an Editors’ Choice by The New York Times and one of The Washington Post’s best nonfiction books of 2007. Her second book, Falling Into the Fire, was named a New Yorker Book to Watch Out For. Her latest book, Waiting for an Echo, was named a New York Times Book to Watch For, a Time Magazine Book to Read in July and an Amazon.com Best Book of the Month. She has also written for many national publications including The New York Times, The New England Journal of Medicine, Time Magazine, The Washington Post Book World, Good Housekeeping and O, The Oprah Magazine.

Dr. Montross has been named a 2017-2018 Faculty Fellow at the Cogut Center for the Humanities, a 2010 MacColl Johnson Fellow in Poetry, and the winner of the 2009 Eugene and Marilyn Glick Emerging Indiana Authors Award. She has also had several poems published in literary journals, and her manuscript Embouchure was a finalist for the National Poetry Series.