RALEIGH, NC – The North Carolina Institute of Political Leadership (IOPL) announced today the schedule for its 2021 Hometown Debate Series, focusing on Criminal Justice Reform in North Carolina. This four-event series brings together elected officials and policy experts for a balanced debate on some of North Carolina’s most important issues.

In its sixth year, the Hometown Debate Series is a collaboration between Spectrum News 1 North Carolina and the North Carolina Institute of Political Leadership, with a new topic every year. Spectrum’s Loretta Boniti returns in 2021 as moderator.

The television schedule for the 2021 IOPL Hometown Debate Series:

October 24: Capital Punishment- UNC Greensboro

  • Representative Pricey Harrison, NC House 61
  • Former Representative Paul “Skip” Stam, NC House 37
  • David Huffman, Retired Catawba County Sheriff and fmr Director of the Governor’s Crime Commission
  • Elizabeth Hambourger, Senior Staff Attorney – Center for Death Penalty Litigation

October 31: The Role of a Prosecutor-Wake Forest Law

  • Jim O’Neill, Forsyth District Attorney
  • Ben David, Pender County District Attorney
  • Nelson Bunn, Executive Director, National Association of District Attorneys
  • Ron Wright, Wake Forest School of Law

November 7: Police Reform- Wake Tech Community College

  • Senator Amy Scott Galey, NC Senate 24
  • Senator Mujtaba Mohammed, NC Senate 38
  • Kerwin Pittman, Emancipate NC
  • Sheriff Clarence F. Birkhead, Durham County

November 14: Juvenile Justice- NC Central School of Law

  • Representative Abe Jones, NC House 38
  • Former Representative Marilyn Avila, NC House 40
  • Adam Sotak, Community Engagement Director, NC Child
  • Additional panelists to be announced

An abbreviated version will air on Spectrum News on Sundays at both 11:30 am and 8:30 pm. The debates will then be available in their entirety on www.spectrumlocalnews.com after their initial airing.

IOPL and its partners are committed to the safety and security of all candidates and staff involved. As a result, debates will be closed to the public.