Rev. Nikia Smith Robert earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Information Systems and Finance from Fairfield University (Connecticut). She also earned a Master of Divinity degree in Systematic Theology and Social Ethics from Union Theological Seminary (New York). Rev. Robert is completing a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Religion at Claremont School of Theology (California). Her transdisciplinary research engages the fields of religion, ethics and public policy to examine the intersection of race, gender and class with an emphasis on theo- ethical underpinnings of punishment and black women’s experiences with the carceral state. Rev. Robert is a recipient of the prestigious Forum for Theological Education Dissertation Fellowship (FTE) award. She currently serves on the Executive Board of the Society of Christian Ethics and is a steering committee member with the American Academy of Religion. Among her publications, Rev. Robert’s landmark article titled, “Penitence, Plantation and the Penitentiary: A Liberation Theology for Lockdown America” in the Harvard Graduate Journal has gained national and international readership. Rev. Robert’s research has reached a wide audience including, the University of Groningen, Harvard University, Emory University, University of California Los Angeles and the White House. Rev. Robert is ordained clergy and a healthcare chaplain. Prior to her vocation as a religious scholar, Rev. Robert worked on Wall Street for ten years in investment banking and public accounting. Rev. Robert is an active member of the illustrious Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated. You can follow her on Twitter @reverendaughter or visit her website at