Donald Perry


Donald Perry is the Founder and Director of Project: Operation Change, a state-wide campaign to change the antiquated policies and abusive practices of the Massachusetts Parole System. He gives an insider’s view in hopes of raising awareness about the system’s many pitfalls.  In 1983, Donald was wrongfully sentenced to a 2nd degree life sentence for armed robbery and served 18 years and 7 months in the Massachusetts Department of Correction.  He was paroled in 2001 and his journey on parole was documented by film producer Joe Berlinger, in an 8-part justice documentary called “The System” (Donald is featured in Episode #5 “Parole and High Stakes”).  On March 29, 2017 a petition was finally heard in Hampden County Superior Court and 34 ½ years later, Donald’s 2nd degree life sentence was vacated.

Today, Donald Perry is “off paper” and committed to being an effective change agent in the movement for criminal justice reform. He holds a B.A. from the University of Massachusetts and is the 2016 recipient of the Criminal Justice Policy Coalition’s Peg Erlanger Award for his work toward criminal justice reform.