N.C. Department of Correction--Correction News--December 1997


As the door begins to slowly close on 1997, let’s pause for a few moments and reminisce about all the accomplishments and blessings DOC has seen over the past twelve months. This time last year, many of us were still recovering from hurricanes Bertha and Fran. I’m glad we’ve had better weather this year. But even if the weather turns to ice and snow during the final days of 1997, I know DOC employees will again rise to the challenge.

When I was sworn into office at the beginning of this year, I felt the warmth and support from all of you in the field. Twelve months later, that support remains as strong as ever and it’s showing everyday. How else can you explain the fact that this department is being looked upon as a model by correctional professionals across the country?

I especially want to thank the other members of the management team who started with me in February. They are Deputy Secretary Theodis Beck, DAPP Director Robert Guy, Asst. Secretary Lynn Phillips, Prisons Director Dan Stieneke, OSDT Director Dan Lilly, Controller Sam Newman and Audit Director Charles Owens.

If you’ve ever moved into a new home, you may have an idea what a challenge it is to move hundreds of inmates into new prisons. We’ve had --- new prisons open across the state this year and each time the move was carried out without any major problems - thanks to top-notch employees like you. Right here in Raleigh, five hundred employees moved into our new administrative office building on Yonkers Road. Please accept my heartfelt thanks for your patience, cooperation and understanding during those difficult moving days.

It’s really been an eventful year full of positive news about DOC employees.

This will be remembered as the year that DOP put to work a new drug sniffing dog and trainer. Arras and Officer Claude Taylor have been successful in finding drugs smuggled into prison.

In Oct., Gov. Hunt presented three DOC employees with his Awards for Excellence.

At 86-years-young, Aldie Johnson, then state government’s oldest employee decided to call it quits. The Blue Ridge Youth Center nurse was an excellent employee and we miss her.

A structure change brought about six new regional directors in the Division of Prisons. I commend the directors for accepting the challenge ahead. I know they’ll do a good job.

I enjoyed attending both the N.C. Probation and Parole conference and the N.C. Correctional Association conference in May and November respectively. It was a pleasure for me to welcome the National Association of Blacks in Criminal Justice to Charlotte in July. Continuing education through these conferences is critical if we are to move forward and that’s exactly what’s happening.

I’m always pleased when I look through our department newsletter each month and read about our employees being honored in their respective communities for their work both in and outside DOC. I still remember those wonderful stories about the correctional and probation and parole officers of the year.

I commend DAPP for beginning its community policing program. It’s a tremendous program which is well-worth the time and effort.

With your continued hard work and dedication, I know that the new year will be just as exciting, prosperous and blessed as 1997 has been. Please accept my warmest wishes for an enjoyable and safe holiday season.

NC DOC Correction News- December 1997
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