Rest in Peace and Power Dawud

Dawud memorial slideshow by layne

We are devastated to share the news that LifeLines member, mentor, activist, writer, and very dear friend David “Dawud” Lee passed away on February 22, 2024. Dawud has been instrumental in building the movement against incarceration and for transformative justice, healing, and accountability. We will be using this page to share photos, video, audio, and writings by and about Dawud. Rest in Peace and Power comrade. May we all do justice to your enormous legacy.

A Life Tribute service for Dawud will be held on Friday, March 8, 2024. The public viewing will be held from 10:00 am to 11:00 am with a service to start at 11:00 am at Bethel Deliverance International Church 2929 W. Cheltenham Avenue Wyncote, PA.

If you have photos or writings of Dawud’s that you would like to share, please reach out at

“I believe that we can collectively create light at the end of the tunnel, so that is one reason to keep fighting. Also I do not want the younger brothers whom I love to have to endure this madness for the rest of their lives, and I want my comrades to one day see the light of day! We cannot accomplish such goals without believing in what we’re doing. My purpose travels well beyond my own self interest because I want to be a part of creating a truly just world for us all to share.”

David “Dawud” Lee

If We Stand Tall it is Because We Stand on the Shoulders of Giants

A tribute to Dawud by Robert Saleem Holbrook

Whenever Dawud and I were together, it was a conspiracy.



In advance of Dawud’s 2022 hearing before the Board of Pardons, we organized the #DawudTaughtMe social media campaign in order to highlight some of the ways Dawud has touched our lives. Learn more here.

WEology: Transformative Justice in Practice

WEology is a booklet conceived of by Dawud about how transformative justice is practiced from behind prison walls. The book was produced by LifeLines: Voices Against the Other Death Penalty and written by Qu’eed Batts, Avron “JaJa” Holland, David “Dawud” Lee, and Nyako Pippen – four incarcerated mentors, advocates, and activists in Pennsylvania.

Download the booklet here.

This video is the panel discussion of the WEology book launch event, featuring Dawud calling in by phone, as well as panelists Kempis Ghani Songster, Robert Saleem Holbrook, and Kris Henderson.

Dawud on self education and empowerment

Publications and projects


Dawud speaks at a LifeLines pamphlet release event in 2016
Dawud speaks on the importance of education and self empowerment, April 2015
Dawud explains mass incarceration, April 2015
Dawud on Death By Incarceration, April 2015