We’re throwing it back today to June 2021 because this episode needs to be heard. In this episode, you will witness moving stories about the life and work of Retired Judge Victor Reyes, a Prison Yoga Project facilitator.

Retired Judge Victor Reyes spent most of his legal career working in the Colorado Criminal Justice System, first as a public defender and then 15 years as a judge for the 10th Judicial District in Southern Colorado. In that time, he developed a deep understanding of the people he defended and whose cases came before him. In 2015, he retired from the bench but soon would be working within the criminal justice system again, this time as a yoga and meditation teacher.

Victor was introduced to the spiritual and yogic practices that would “change the course of his life” in 2012. Seeing the benefits of the practices in his personal life, after Victor retired from the bench, he contacted the Youth Offender System (YOS) management in La Vista, Colorado. The young men sentenced to this facility were usually convicted of violent felonies. It was the last opportunity for the youth before the system would transfer them to the general population. It felt like the right place to try to make a difference.

Shortly after he began working with the youth, he was asked to provide practices for adults at the La Vista Correctional Facility. Around this time, he also started work with groups of survivors of domestic violence.

In 2018, Victor began leading yoga practices at the minimum security camp at the Federal Correctional facility in Florence, Colorado. Shortly after, he was asked to bring mediation classes to the USP ADMAX-Florence facility, one of the highest security correctional facilities in the US.

He has provided training locally, nationally, and internationally on issues related to domestic violence since 2002 and personal wellness since 2016. He also facilitates groups for elementary-age children residing in underfunded Pueblo communities.

Thank you for being here to witness Judge Reyes’s stories. His life is a true testament to living your yoga.