Hello, my name is Richard Dieter & I'm the Executive Director of the Death Penalty Information Center, or DPIC.
For over twenty years, DPIC has helped to change fundamentally the American discourse on capital punishment, moving it away from emotionally charged rhetoric and toward a well-informed, fact-based discussion. We have pursued this goal through a strategy of professional communications and educational outreach to the public. In collaboration with other organizations, we have seen a sharp reversal in the course of the death penalty over the past decade. The country has moved from an era of increasing executions and state expansion to one of clear decline by every measure.
We have developed strong relationships with journalists, editors, and producers, across the country and internationally. They trust the accuracy of DPIC's information and insights. People everywhere rely on DPIC as a valuable resource. With the powerful tool of information that DPIC makes available, opinion leaders and decision-makers have been able to bring about considerable change on this issue.
DPIC provides a wide range of tools and resources to educate the public about the death penalty system. Our website, deathpenaltyinfo.org, has often had over 1 million hits in a day. The number of "unique visitors" exceeds that of many national organizations with broad agendas. The site is continually updated and expanded, and includes such valuable resources as searchable databases, videos, podcasts, fact sheets, and referrals to other organizations. The site is often linked to by national media websites and referred to in court opinions, legislative materials, books, and by people who work on this issue.
We believe that a well-informed, balanced discussion on the death penalty is essential to address the problems of this system. To that end, DPIC has published more than 20 reports on various issues related to the death penalty, including reports focused on innocence, costs, race, and the quality of legal representation. These reports exposed glaring flaws in the country's death penalty system, and hence, raised awareness of the need for change. We hope that you will join us in addressing this critical issue.