Daniel Tapia is a life long resident of Uptown New Orleans. When he was 11 he started working to support himself and his family, and like many others in his community, selling drugs was one of the few opportunities he had to make money. In 2005 he was wrongfully convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to life without the possibility of parole. Prior to his transfer to a state correctional facility he survived Hurricane Katrina and the subsequent flooding while in the custody of Orleans Parish Prison. As is the case for many people in prison serving life without parole sentences Daniel did not have access to educational programming, but he never gave up. Finally the opportunity presented itself and he began studying business management through independent and long distance studies at Louisiana State University where he maintained a 3.0 grade point average. He also completed a certification program through Penn Foster Career School for automobile repair. After years of appeals, Daniel was finally offered a new trial, and after 12 years in prison was finally released. When he first came home, he was rejected from numerous jobs and housing opportunities because of his felony record. However, just as he did with his education in prison, and his pursuit of a new trial, he never gave up. In the year after his release Daniel secured gainful employment, a stable place to live, and he is now a father. Daniel is coordinating the redevelopment of the "Keller Mansion" a 6500 sq' property in the heart of Central City, New Orleans. The redevelopment of The Keller Mansion will create space for The First 72+, transitional housing and reentry program, and commercial space for small businesses created in the Rising Foundations Small Business Incubator. During the construction process the redevelopment will create jobs for formerly incarcerated people.

We Need Your Help!

We envision a world where prior incarceration is not a barrier to secure housing, employment, and community engagement & acceptance. Please consider donating to help us pursue this vision.

The First 72+ is a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization as described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Your generous donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. 


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