About ACE!

Who We Are

The Center for Advancing Correctional Excellence (ACE!) is a dynamic center that aims to bridge disciplines and bring researchers, practitioners, and policymakers together to grapple with issues that affect criminal justice and health systems. As part of the Department of Criminology, Law, & Society at George Mason University, ACE!’s mission is three-pronged: 1. to conduct high quality research; 2. form lasting partnerships with the community; and 3. to develop the next generation of researchers. Our work is collaborative and creative, and we have built a strong network of faculty, graduate students, and undergraduate students who work with practitioners, policymakers, researchers, and criminal justice-involved individuals to promote evidence-informed approaches.


ACE! is interdisciplinary, and we interact and work across disciplines at MASON as well as other universities and research organizations. At MASON, ACE! works with colleagues in the College of Health and Human Services, Volgenau School of Engineering, College of Humanities and Social Services, and School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution.


Founded in 2010 by Drs. Faye Taxman and Danielle Rudes, ACE!’s goals are:

To advance an understanding of how to improve outcomes from the correctional system and advance scientific knowledge about effective interventions

To improve methodologies for conducting studies in justice settings and translating evidence into practice

To design and conduct original research that addresses correctional policy questions

To contribute to the support and academic development of graduate and undergraduate students at George Mason University as well as early career faculty


We work with federal, state, local, and community-based partners to further the conversation on the state of corrections. Over 200 jurisdictions have used or are currently using our translational tools (link to SUSTAIN and the RNR Simulation Tool here). Our research has helped inform evidence-based practices for incarcerated and community correctional programs and has given programs a method to self-evaluate their adherence to evidence-based practices. Additionally, our team has been published in xx academic journals, presented at professional conferences nationwide and internationally, and has delivered webinars on a variety of topics (link to ACE! Multimedia page here).