Staff Newsletter | November 2020

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missouri department of corrections

Employee Newsletter   |  November 2020

Growing the Family


Refer New Staff & Earn More Money!

Staffing shortages at many correctional centers affect day-to-day operations and place a strain on our teams. We need your help to recruit new staff and make our facilities safer.  

The department has changed the incentive program for referrals of Corrections Officer I and Cook new hires. Now it’s easier and faster to complete the process, and you can earn up to twice as much money per referral. If you refer a new team member, you can earn a one-time payment of $250 when the new hire has completed basic training and a second one-time payment of $250 when that new hire has been employed with us for six months. Effective Oct. 20 and continuing until further notice, this program is open to all corrections staff except those with full-time recruitment duties.

Get details and forms here »

Reentry Rock Stars

Federal Reentry Leader Recognizes Missouri as National Role Model


When Pastor Tony Lowden arrived in Missouri in Oct. 7, he was propelled by rumors that our state might have one of the most effective reentry systems — an integrated network of government agencies, services providers and nonprofit groups — in the United States. By the time he left on Oct. 9, he was convinced the reputation was deserved. 

Lowden, executive director of the Federal Interagency Council on Crime Prevention and Improving Reentry, spent three days sampling the programs and services the state provides to help Missourians succeed after release from prison. The tour underscored how every corrections professional drives reentry success and supports our mission of improving lives for safer communities.


Lowden toured the Transition Center of St. Louis and met probation and parole staff as well as current residents and former clients. He toured Southeast Correctional Center, visiting the Intensive Therapeutic Community and Transitional Housing Unit and meeting with education, religious services, and recreation teams. He toured the Poplar Bluff Community Supervision Center and met with the Improving Community Treatment Success team. He also met with community partners such as the Bootheel Regional Consortium, ASPIRE MO and MoSTART. 

He was impressed.


“Missouri is getting it right," Lowden told The Missouri Times. "If you look at the leadership in Missouri that has made criminal justice reform and reentry a priority — from the governor and two U.S. senators at the federal level down to the departments — they’re doing it right. I’m going back to try to replicate some of what Missouri is doing in the whole nation. It’s absolutely phenomenal for a state prison system to be doing this amount of work around prison reform.” 

Digital Reentry Conference Brings Teams Together All Month

Though we missed rubbing elbows and singing karaoke with reentry partners at the Lake of the Ozarks, the all-digital 2020 Missouri Reentry Conference provided the chance to meet online, while showcasing and celebrating the community's resilience and versatility. 


Organized around theme "2020 Vision for the Justice-Involved," the conference was held as a monthlong series of eight webinars and four online film festivals. The convenient format meant more people could tune in without taking time off.


And you still can! Sessions were recorded and are now available as videos on the ARCHS conference app or website. Just check the agenda for your favorite topics or people. Highlights featuring corrections folks include the panel discussions "Remote Work in Probation and Parole" and "ASPIRE MO – A Collaborative Entrepreneurial Approach to Reentry" as well as Director Precythe's keynote address.

You can also watch all four sessions of the weekly film festival for an uplifting reminder of why you do what you do every day.

Reentry Success Stories: Our Mission in Action

Three Kansas City women who graduated from career and tech education programs at Chillicothe Correctional Center (CCC) are finding success after incarceration. Tiffany Rice completed the professional gardening program at CCC and now works for Embassy Gardening. So does Misty Brown, who served as a tutor in professional gardening at CCC; she recently earned Department of Transportation certification and now is working on lawn spray technician certification. Marti Greer graduated from Basic Customer Service at CCC, where she served a 30-year sentence, found a temporary job and is working on completion of forklift operator certification training.

This is why we do what we do. Our work improves lives.

Purple Power

Corrections Staff Unite Against Domestic Violence


In 2020, Missouri communities have seen a steep rise in incidents of domestic violence, tied to the COVID-19 public health crisis and the related stress families have experienced. For public safety professionals, participating in this year's Domestic Violence Awareness Month was particularly important.

Corrections teams did not disappoint. 

Staff donned purple masks, held purple Zoom calls and served purple snacks. Corrections Training Officer Chris Gremminger organized a donation collection for A Friend's Place, a Bonne Terre domestic violence shelter serving women and children. Staff at Eastern Region Training Center donated clothing, toiletries, paper products, laundry detergent, over-the-counter medications and other essentials to the shelter, whose 2020 fundraising efforts have been hindered by the COVID-19 public health crisis.

Giving Back


Contributions to the Missouri State Employees Charitable Campaign (MSECC) continue through Nov. 20. 


The annual unified fundraising effort gives state employees the opportunity to make donations to their favorite charitable organizations through the convenience of payroll deduction or one-time gifts. All staff should have received an email from the Office of Administration about the campaign and a new online giving option available this year through the ESS Portal for payroll deduction.

Watch Director Anne Precythe's message to staff about the the charitable campaign and one of our chosen charities, the Correctional Peace Officers Foundation. Watch the video »

August 2020 Employee of the Month

eom - charles

Charles Cloninger, a Storekeeper I at Western Reception, Diagnostic & Correctional Center (WRDCC), looks out for offenders' health and the department's budget. While working at the WRDCC canteen, Cloninger noticed a supply of chicken breast had been delivered in packages that weren't properly sealed. He not only removed the 33 packages from the canteen but also contacted Central Warehouse to alert the team about the potential health hazard. The warehouse identified an additional 1,152 affected packages. Removing the items helped to prevent potential food poisoning and saved the department more than $26,000. 

Crisis Intervention Teams Earn Accolades


Life-saving interventions by Phillip Rippinger, a sergeant at South Central Correctional Center (SCCC), have earned recognition from the Missouri Crisis Intervention Team Council.

Rippinger used communication and de-escalation skills to help an acquaintance in crisis who was experiencing suicidal thoughts; the talked with the man for more than an hour while simultaneously contacting local law enforcement.

The department's 637 trained Crisis Intervention Team officers use their skills to de-escalate tense situations and prevent uses of force — with an 88% success rate this year. On and off duty, staff use CIT techniques to prevent tragedy and save lives. 

Support for CTO Jeremy Brooks


Support events and fundraising campaigns continue as the corrections family rallies around Jeremy Brooks, an Eastern Region Training Center correctional training officer seriously injured in an automobile accident that took the life of his partner, Emily Clifford, Sept. 27. Events so far have included a candlelight vigil, poker runs, silent auctions, a raffle and other fundraisers created to help cover medical bills. A fund has been set up at First State Community Bank.

Show Me Excellence Summit

op ex poster

Our Research, Planning & Process Improvement team was instrumental in the success of the October 2020 Show Me Excellence Summit. The daylong digital event brought together representatives from all Missouri state government agencies to discuss how we can work together to improve the lives of Missourians and make the best use of our most valuable resource: people. The summit featured breakout sessions; keynote addresses by leadership experts Bob Chapman and Kristen Cox; and story boards highlighting department process improvement projects. See ours here »

Staying Informed

Sign up for more newsletters to stay up to date on department programs and initiatives. 

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A new Prison Research Innovation Network (PRIN) quarterly newsletter keeps stakeholders up to date on Missouri's participation in a grant-funded project to establish more rehabilitative and humane correctional environments.

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The Work Well staff wellness newsletter keeps corrections team members aware of resources that help support health and wellness across all facets of life: physical and nutritional; emotional and spiritual; environmental and social; and intellectual and financial.

Subscribe here » 

Enter your email address, and then select the newsletter you want from the Topics list.

November MO Learning Challenge


The Training Academy would like to challenge you during the month of November to take time out of your workday to complete the November MO Learning challenge. The content this month focuses on the elective Learning WebEx. Challenge yourself to finish a short task or video daily. Each can be completed in less than 5 minutes. When you are done, you will have completed the course for training credit.

Get started »

Scholarships Available to Staff


In celebration of the 55th anniversary of the completion of the Gateway Arch, Western Governors University Missouri is offering the Gateway to Your Future Scholarship for Missourians who want to enhance their careers with a college degree. The Gateway Arch opened October 28, 1965. WGU wants to celebrate this important legacy.

The scholarships, each valued at up to $2,000 ($500 per six-month term, renewable for up to four terms), will be applied toward WGU Missouri’s already-low tuition for an undergraduate or graduate degree in information technology, nursing and healthcare, business, or teacher education.  

Apply by Dec. 31, 2020 at »

Get a COVID-19 Test!

FREE community COVID-19 testing is being held at locations throughout Missouri through Nov. 14. Any Missouri resident can register online to get a test at any of these locations. Help stop the spread of the virus!

Did You Know?

Flu Season is Just Around the Corner


The best way to prevent the flu is to get vaccinated every year.


As we quickly approach flu season, and with COVID-19 still on the rise, getting a flu vaccine is one easy way to help protect yourself and others.

From the CDC's website:

A 2020 study found that during the 2018-2019 flu season, flu vaccination reduced flu-associated hospitalization by 41% and flu-associated emergency department visits by half among children (aged 6 months to 17 years old).​

MODOC Employee Health Nurses are giving flu shots throughout November and December. Keep an eye out for “The Flu Ends with You” flyers with dates/times.

If you would like an additional clinic set up for your worksite or you have questions about flu vaccines or the nurses’ availability, please contact your local employee health nurse.




Amy Kitchens


TCC, CRTC, Central Office, FRDC, CTCC, SCCC, D26, D27, D29

Stacie Frank



Paula McCurdy



Angela Albertson


WMCC, CCC, MCC, D2S, D18 and D18S

Mollie Lillard



Stephanie Ebert


ERDCC, FCC, PCC D12, D36, D11, D11s, D15

Zoye Gilliland


TCSTL, MECC, ERA, D7, D8, D16, D17

Melissa Crumley


SECC, D22, D14, D14S, D37, D31, D23, D25

Dolma Tamang


KCRC, D4, D4S, D19, D24, D5s, D5

Melissa Tourville


OCC, SCCC, D10, D30, D9, D33, D44/S, D43, D42, D21, D10/s, D13, D20

Tari Fitzgerald




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.

Staff News

Build Rapport with Coworkers


We're working hard to recruit and retain staff and to make the Missouri Department of Corrections a great place to work. Teamwork is essential to everything we do. It helps ensure safety. It makes us stronger. It even brings a little more fun to our daily jobs.


  • Listen to your coworkers, and show empathy.
  • Share ideas, and collaborate on projects.
  • Work together to solve problems and resolve conflicts.