Staff Newsletter | April 2019

View as a webpage

missouri department of corrections

Employee Newsletter   |   April 2019

Capitol Takeover

Corrections Day at the Capitol Showcases Best of MODOC

Corrections Day Overall

Corrections staff converged in the Missouri State Capitol third-floor rotunda March 27 to show off MODOC people and programs to the Missouri General Assembly. Legislators and other government leaders learned about staff recruitment and training as well as programs for education, workforce development, reentry and giving back to the community. 

COI Keane

COI Tamara Keane and other officers modeled the chic new custody staff uniforms, which gradually are being rolled out in facilities. 


First Lady Teresa Parson talked with our reentry unit's Ken Chapman, Shelle Jacobs and Latrice Tate about partnering with employers who hire former offenders.


Vocational Teacher Charlie Grosvenor showed Rep. Tim Remole how to use a welding simulator. 


Vocational teachers Chris Farmer, Mary Connell and Doug Ruck presented job-training programs in culinary arts, heavy equipment operation and more.


Charles Barnes from the Father Support Center, Transition Center of St. Louis Associate Superintendent Cynthia Hygrade, District 26 Administrator Shannon Kimsey and TCSTL Associate Superintendent Chris Sarchett highlighted community supervision centers' tiered programming models that focus on cognitive interventions and wrap-around services.

Southeast Correctional Center Gets Down to Business

SECC Award

Southeast Correctional Center has been named the Sikeston Chamber & Economic Development Corporation's 2019 Business of the Year! Boasting a new apprenticeship, fundraising projects and other programs that boost local economic development, the prison was recognized for expanding outreach opportunities and creating a skilled workforce for the community.


In 2018, in partnership with Amanzi Farms, SECC launched a registered horticulture apprenticeship to teach job skills to offenders nearing release.

With support from staff, offenders also give back by holding fundraisers for community initiatives. In 2018, they collected donations to cover fees for Charleston High School seniors taking a work readiness assessment.

Honoring Victims

Victim Services

During National Crime Victims Rights Week, April 7-13, the department is recognizing crime victims with a series of events, including a proclamation signing and vigil 6-8 p.m. April 8 at the Cole County Sheriff's Office; a tree planting ceremony at 10 a.m. April 12 in Maryville Lake Mozingo Park; and a resource fair 10 a.m.-2 p.m. April 13 in Jefferson City Memorial Park.

The Office of Victim Services provides resources and advocacy to victims of crime. Learn more about the team's important work »

Celebrating Volunteers


In 2018, more than 2,000 Volunteers in Corrections donated 46,882 hours of service to offenders, clients and programs inside Missouri prisons and in the community. During National Volunteer Week, April 7-13, we celebrate the Missourians who bridge the gap between offenders and the community and give back through religious and spiritual programs, employability skills training, performing arts, restorative justice, hospice and other programs that improve lives.

Staff in the Division of Human Services coordinate volunteer and internship opportunities. Learn more about these programs »

Governor Parson Visits Corrections Staff

ERDCC - table

On a whirlwind March 22 listening tour, Governor Mike Parson visited three Missouri prisons to talk with staff about the challenges of their jobs, the benefits of a proposed pay increase and the importance of team building in staff retention.

“People want to feel like they’re part of something,” Gov. Parson told staff. “We want you to feel good about what you’re doing.”


Traveling with Director Anne Precythe, the Governor made stops at Farmington Correctional Center; Eastern Reception, Diagnostic & Correctional Center; and Southeast Correctional Center.

He met with two groups at each stop, talking to corrections officers, support staff and supervisors as well as each facility’s administrative team.


Team members shared their concerns about overtime and fatigue. They proposed process and safety improvements. They voiced enthusiasm and gratitude for the proposed pay plan. They also said the best part of the job is the sense of family they share with coworkers.


Southeast Correctional Center staff talked to the Governor about their efforts to expand training, improve efficiency and make their institution a better place to work. “That’s what makes you successful — all of you working together,” the governor told the staff, praising their initiative. “You are a model for this state.”

March 2019 MODOC Employee of the Month

March EOM

March Employee of the Month Robyn Taft knows to trust her instincts. When Probation & Parole Officer II Taft suspected a client on parole had committed a new sexual assault, she contacted local police, placed the client on electronic monitoring, tracked and restricted the client's movements, and then helped with an investigation leading to his arrest. Her sharp intuition and swift action prevented crime, making our communities safer. 

Higher Education Custom Made for Corrections Staff


Get ready to take your education to the next level! MODOC has partnered with Ozarks Technical Community College (OTC) to provide affordable online degree programs to corrections staff. 

Through OTC, you can earn an associate's degree in criminal justice, behavioral science, business or general studies. You can take classes online around your schedule in 8-week, 14-week or 16-week sessions. You also can access online tutoring and student support. A dedicated representative serves the specific needs of MODOC staff.

Tuition starts at $108 per credit hour, and financial aid is available.

The college has built an online portal just for corrections staff. Check it out »

MODOC Mental Health Champion


Mental Health Contract Monitor Page Nichols has been elected co-chair of the Comprehensive Psychiatric Services State Advisory Council, a statewide council that shapes mental health policy affecting services for Missourians with mental health and substance use disorders. Nichols long has been an active and vocal advocate for MODOC and offenders with mental illness.

Message from Corrections Officer I Pam Trammell


Corrections Officer I Pam Trammell from Fulton Reception & Diagnostic Center is facing her fifth battle with cancer and has had to leave the department. She sent a message to her team, excerpted below:

"Coming in to see ya'll each night has been a blessing for me and given me a purpose after so many years being away from Corrections. Ya'll have welcomed me with open arms, shown compassion, patience and listened to me rattle on and on at times. That is one thing that has NOT changed here, that feeling of 'Family.' First shift, as you well know, is just a different breed of people. We are always there for each other, and that is wonderful.

"Thank you for making me feel like I made a difference here, no matter the size. Thank you for giving me 'purpose,' something I had missed in my life for a long time. Your friendship has meant more to me than you will ever know. Your kind words and prayers have been overwhelming. For those of you who are the newest of our group, I love you just the same. I know at times it can get discouraging, but if you love your job and you look forward to coming to work, you belong here. Don't ever give up."

MODOC Feeds MORE Missourians

Food Drive Win

The Missouri Department of Corrections placed first among all state government agencies in pounds of food donated during the National Ag Week food drive. Participating corrections offices, districts and facilities donated 1,070 pounds of food for the Food Bank of Central and Northeast Missouri. 

Along with food donations, the drive collected soda tabs for Ronald McDonald House Charities of Mid-Missouri as well as cash donations for both organizations. In total, state government workers raised 24,000 pounds of food (including cash donation equivalents) and tabs. #WeServeMo

Share Your State Government Solutions by April 17

Team Ag Stop

State government leaders know staff have great ideas. That's why they created the Show-Me Challenge, a competition in which teams of government workers propose ways for government to save time and money.

How It Works:

  • Teams develop short pitches for their solutions.
  • A selection committee reviews the pitches and narrows the pool to about 10 finalist teams.
  • The finalist teams develop their proposed solutions more fully and deliver in-person pitches to the senior leadership selection committee.
  • Winners are chosen based upon the quality of their solutions and their final presentation.

Team Ag Stop won the Cycle 1 challenge with an agriculture web portal and smart phone application.

Among the finalists was the Show Me You Care team, featuring corrections employees Kim Mills, Lori Burk, Randi McMenemy and Zach Wicker.

Cycle 2 pitches are due April 17, 2019. Enter your pitch »

Staff and Offenders Help Stave Off Floodwaters


Flooding persists throughout the Midwest as river levels rise, and Governor Mike Parson has declared a state of emergency in Missouri. MODOC is lending a hand in areas hard-hit by flooding. Staff and offenders from Women's Eastern Reception, Diagnostic & Correctional Center have volunteered time to sandbag in Clarksville, and volunteers from Chillicothe Correctional Center have sandbagged in Norbone, while staff and offenders in St. Joseph have provided services there. To help people affected by flooding, contact your local Red Cross.

Pay Plan Update

A proposed Missouri Department of Corrections pay plan is making its way through the state legislature. Developed by MODOC and supported by Governor Parson, the plan calls for a 3% salary increase for all state workers, plus an additional and ongoing 1% increase for every two years of continuous service, up to 20 years, for all non-executive MODOC staff. It’s the biggest raise in the department's history. The plan must be approved by the Missouri General Assembly before it can be implemented. 

In March, the plan was reviewed by the House of Representatives and approved with no changes. Now it moves to the Missouri State Senate for review.

Director Precythe will keep all staff up to date on developments.

Previous updates:

Missouri Department of Corrections in the News

Your great work is making headlines! Check out news media coverage of staff accomplishments in award-winning workforce development, performing arts, adult education and community supervision -- plus the inspiring act of coming together to save Missouri towns from flooding.



Improving Lives for Safer Communities


Excellence in Corrections for a Safer Missouri


We value safe work environments, a capable workforce and reduced risk and recidivism.
We value integrity and respect.
We value supportive leadership.
We value employee participation and teamwork.

R-E-S-P-E-C-T in M-O-D-O-C


We're working hard to recruit and retain staff and to make  our department a great place to work. Demonstrating respect for coworkers builds a positive work environment. 


  • Encourage coworkers to share ideas, and then listen.
  • Don't engage in insults or name-calling.
  • Be mindful and accepting of cultural differences.