The Petey Greene Program supplements education in jails, prisons, and detention centers, by preparing volunteers to provide free, quality tutoring and related programming to support the academic achievement of incarcerated people.


The Petey Greene Program will be the national leader of quality tutoring and related educational services to support incarcerated students in achieving their academic goals. The Petey Greene volunteer experience will inspire our alumni to advocate and take on leadership roles that will re-imagine the criminal justice system. We envision a world in which all incarcerated people have access to high quality academic programs.


The Petey Greene Program is named after Ralph Waldo "Petey" Greene, Jr., a TV and radio talk show host and community activist who served time in prison and went on to become one of the most notable media personalities in Washington, D.C. history.  While incarcerated for armed robbery, Greene became the prison’s disc jockey and subsequently a role model for many other individuals incarcerated in the facility. Greene’s friend Charlie Puttkammer was inspired by Greene’s life, and founded the Petey Greene Program in his honor, to strengthen education services available in jails and prisons, and to offer college students the opportunity to support incarcerated students in their academic work.  Since 2009, the Petey Greene Program has operated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.