Staff Newsletter | October 2021

View as a webpage

missouri department of corrections

Employee Newsletter   |  October 2021

Bicentennial Extravaganza

MODOC Takes Parade by Storm


Mid-Missouri teams came together to represent the Missouri Department of Corrections in the Governor's Bicentennial Inaugural Parade in Jefferson City Sept. 18, celebrating the 200th birthday of the state.


Honor Guard members from Jefferson City Correctional Center (JCCC), Corrections Emergency Response Team (CERT) members from Algoa Correctional Center (ACC), Jake Butler and Stormy from Puppies for Parole, and Director Anne Precythe marched in the parade. Officer Hannah Samuels and Sergeant Michael Ashley waved to the 5,000-person crowd from the float, while recruiters Samona Kosfeld and Amanda Ferrin greeted parade-goers from a truck displaying recruitment messages.


JCCC staff oversaw the construction of the department's float, a 14-foot replica of the Missouri State Penitentiary (MSP) designed and built by Missouri Vocational Enterprises (MVE) workers and hand-painted by Restorative Justice artists.

While the float represents the history of corrections and celebrates a historic landmark, its construction highlights the evolution of corrections in Missouri, showcasing skills built through job training and Restorative Justice programs and the hard work of staff who change lives.

See more photos and videos »

Show Me Excellence Month

Professional Development Opportunities Open to All Staff

Show Me Excelllence month

Throughout October, Missouri state government is celebrating operational excellencethe ongoing effort to equip state team members with the skills, capabilities, mindsets and processes that improve performance and make our departments better. Cross-departmental undertakings include initiatives such as The Missouri Way, the Missouri Leadership Academy and the Show Me Challenge. This month, professional development opportunities are available to all staff through live sessions and MOLearning modules.

In the Missouri Department of Corrections, Research, Planning & Process Improvement Director David Edwards and his team help us continually improve. They spearhead the strategic plan that points the department in the right direction, and they manage the initiatives that keep us on track. They collect data, evaluate program performance, monitor progress and oversee research. Questions? Contact the team at

Meet the Experts


Register now for the Show Me Excellence Summit, a virtual conference held 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 19. Events include an address by keynote speaker Craig Russell from Disney Imagineering, two round-table discussions examining operational excellence in practice in state government, and 13 breakout sessions on topics ranging from collaboration and coaching to customer service and process mapping.

Double up on knowledge by watching the recorded 2020 summit sessions »

Get the Training


Learn how to do everything better.

The state's operational excellence team has launched Show Me Excellence White Belt Training, a MOLearning training series designed to help all state team members build basic problem-solving and process-improvement skills using effective visualization and organization tools.

The state also offers live training sessions throughout the month on topics such as chatbots, risk management, performance measures and more — including a course titled "Come for the Standard Work, Stay for the Pork Roast." Check them out here »

Play Your Part


One way the department drives operational excellence and continuous improvement is through our department-wide strategic plan — plus the strategic initiatives that support it. In this video, Planning and Grants Manager Shelly Graf Shugart reviews the department's accomplishments from fiscal year 2021 and introduces new and ongoing initiatives for the current fiscal year, July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022. Learn how the changes affect you and your job and what you can do to make the department better. For more information on current strategic initiatives, take a look at our website.

Stopping the Cycle of Violence

October is both National Domestic Violence Awareness Month and National Bullying Prevention Month. Join us in taking a stand against intimidation and violence.

Domestic Violence Prevention


The Division of Human Services team and other Central Office staff wear purple to raise awareness about domestic violence. Show your support by sharing photos of your team in purple. Send them to Purple Thursday is Oct. 21.

In Missouri, 41.8% of women and 35.2% of men experience intimate partner physical violence, intimate partner sexual violence and/or intimate partner stalking in their lifetimes. The Missouri Justice Reinvestment Initiative aims to raise awareness about this important health and safety issue for Missourians. Here's what you can do to support Domestic Violence Awareness Month throughout October.

Wear Purple: On Oct. 21, Purple Thursday, wear purple to show you're taking a stand against domestic violence. Paint the nail of your ring finger purple to #PutTheNailInIt. Complete this sign and take a photo with it. Send group photos to

Social Media: Use hashtags #DVAM2021 and #NoMore, and share MO Coalition Against Domestic & Sexual Violence Resources.

Email: Add a statement to your email signature in October. “October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Learn more #DVAM2021 #NoMore #WeAreResilient.”

Learn: A new Missouri Domestic Violence Law supports employees affected by domestic violence.

Help Locally: Contact a shelter near you, and organize a donation drive.

Contact the Office of Victims Services to find out what else you can do to help. 

Bullying Prevention


Research shows that people who were bullied as kids or teens are significantly more likely to be convicted of crimes and to end up in prison. 

During October, National Bullying Prevention Month, join us in spreading the message that there's no place for bullying in Missouri communities. Access bullying facts and resources at

Made by the Jefftown Productions offender media team in Jefferson City Correctional Center, Evolve, an original animated music video, examines the roots of bullying and violence and traces the cycle of violence from the home to the community. Watch the video »

Reentry Refresh

reetnry conference - lemon

Join us on Zoom in October for the annual Missouri Reentry Conference presented by Area Resources for Community and Human Services (ARCHS). Designed for professionals supporting a successful transition from incarceration to the community, this year’s conference highlights people and organizations leading the way in leadership, education, motivation, opportunity and negotiation (aka LEMON).

Winners Circle

Top Dog

dog team

Algoa Correctional Center led the pack this year in the annual dog tracking competition at Lake of the Ozarks State Park. Farmington Correctional Center took second place, Western Missouri Correctional Center took third, and Northeast Correctional Center took home the fourth-place plaque.

Head of the Class


New officers have been awarded the Director of Staff Training & Development Coin of Excellence. Honorees were nominated by peers and selected by staff for demonstrating a high standard of excellence during training in areas including attendance, appearance, class conduct, class participation and test scores. Eastern Reception, Diagnostic & Correctional Center Correctional Officer I Christopher Dill was selected by the Eastern Region Training Center. He had perfect attendance and scored in the 90th percentile on written tests. Maryville Treatment Center Correctional Officer I Levi Fuller was selected by the Western Region Training Center for his positive attitude and commitment to teamwork.

Inclusive Excellence

treatment court

Boone County Treatment Court has been awarded the 2021 National Equity and Inclusion Award by the National Association of Drug Court Professionals. The annual award recognizes the accomplishments of treatment court programs that play a significant role in improving services across diverse populations, eliminating disparities and ensuring inclusion. The Boone County Treatment Court includes District 6 Probation and Parole Officers Angie Combs, Kimberly DeVault, Sara Henley, Mike Malone, Mary Tollenaar and Jamie Wyble and Unit Supervisor Pari Smith. Read more in the Columbia Daily Tribune »

Taking Care of Yourself

Get a Flu Shot


When flu season and a pandemic converge, protecting public health gets even more complicated. It's up to us to do all we can to reduce risks to ourselves, our teams, our families and our communities.

The best way to prevent the flu is to get vaccinated every year. The flu vaccine can not only significantly decrease the chance that you'll get the flu but also reduce the risk of flu-associated hospitalization — as well as the severity of illness if you still get sick after being vaccinated.

The Department of Corrections offers on-site flu vaccine clinics throughout October. Check in with your employee health nurse, and stay tuned for details.

Need inspiration? Watch Nurse Amy Kitchens give Director Anne Precythe a flu shot »

Get Covered


Open enrollment is now underway for the Missouri Consolidated Health Care Plan (MCHCP), the health insurance provider for Missouri state government employees. If you want to enroll in state employee health benefits or make changes to your current plan, NOW is the time. Open enrollment for 2022 ends Oct. 31, 2021. New coverage and changes to coverage go into effect Jan. 1, 2022.

Confused about your options? No worries. Missouri Department of Corrections Personnel Analyst Sarah Brendel walks you through the benefits in this animated video.

Throughout October, you also can access webinars, booklets, how-to videos, customer service contacts and more at the MCHCP website, Still have questions? Contact the Office of Personnel at 573-526-6484.

Watch the video »

Get Outside

Outdoor More

Through Oct. 15, the department is sponsoring the Outdoor More staff wellness challenge, which boosts mental and physical health while providing a chance to win prizes. Here's how it works:

Step 1. Have fun outside. 

Any outdoor recreational activity counts! Some examples include walking, biking, gardening, fishing, golfing, hiking and swimming.

Step 2. Track hours spent outside July 15 to October 15.

Use a tracking method that works for you: notepad, FitBit, mobile app, etc. Record the date, type of outdoor activity, and number of hours. The top contenders will be asked to submit their activity logs/trackers to Wellness Coordinator Caitlin Rudolph for verification at the end of the challenge. 

Step 3. Submit a completed Web Focus Form each month.

Participants receive an email Aug. 15, Sept. 15 and Oct. 15 reminding them to access the latest WebFocus form on the Wellness Challenge web page at Complete and submit the form showing the preceding month's tracked activity hours. Each form will be available for one week.

Step 4. Win.

The top three participants with verified tracked activity hours win prizes. The first-place winner gets dibs on selecting a prize bundle, followed by second-place and third-place winners. Winners will be announced by Oct. 25.


BBQ for 2     Kayaking for 2     Camping for 2

Taking Care of the Community

Charitable Campaign


In the past two years, the Missouri State Employees Charitable Campaign (MSECC) has contributed nearly $2 million to nonprofit organizations that improve the lives of Missourians. In this annual unified fundraising effort, state employees make donations to their favorite charitable organizations through payroll deduction or one-time gift by completing pledge cards on paper or through the Employee Self Service portal (ESS). Last year, state employees donated to 629 organizations, including individual charities, such as the Samaritan Center and the Food Bank for Northeast and Central Missouri, as well as larger federations, such as America's Best Charities and United Way. As the largest state government agency in Missouri, the Department of Corrections team can make a big difference. Get started at the MSECC website »

P&P Pumpkin Patch


Community Transition Officers David Walker and Kevin Wheeler have been leading offenders in maintaining a Restorative Justice garden at the District 1 Community Supervision Center in St. Joseph. There, men on probation and parole have grown more than 4,800 pounds of corn, squash, tomatoes and cucumbers for donation to Second Harvest Food Bank. The pumpkins recently harvested from the garden were donated to a local children's advocacy center and children's home, where kids can decorate them for Halloween.

Ambassador Spotlight

Corrections Way ambassadors serve a vital role in supporting The Corrections Way, a foundation of
conduct and communication built around a core of common values guiding our work. Ambassadors steer fellow staff to resources and answer questions about Corrections Way training, practice and initiatives.

Meet an ambassador:

Katie Williams

Probation & Parole Officer II, District 5

Katie Williams

“It was in 2017 that the department took a dramatic shift with new leadership, developed a strategic plan, and launched The Corrections Way. DOC started asking front line staff to evaluate their supervisors and give suggestions on how to make the workplace better. They wanted feedback, and staff were finally given a voice!

"But there was an even bigger voice that came into my life in 2018  one whose office was located up the hallway on the left. An inspirational person is defined as someone 'of influence that enlightens, uplifts and encourages others.'  Sounds a lot like the definition of an ambassador, doesn’t it? Most of us have had the opportunity to meet people like that you know, those transformational leaders who radiate enthusiasm, energy and passion for what they do. They make positive changes in those who follow without even realizing they’re doing it. I was lucky enough in 2018 to be assigned to a supervisor whose qualities were exactly that. She also happened to be one of the first Corrections Way ambassadors selected by the department. To learn about this pivotal person in my life, please read my testimony!“

Read Katie Williams's story »

Growing the Team

Welcoming & Keeping Staff

When it comes to our statewide staffing situation, the tide is turning. Right now more staff are joining the Missouri Department of Corrections than are leaving. Our goal is to build on this progress. Here are a few things we're working on:

  • Employment applications are now being accepted and processed in the simpler, streamlined program ApplicantPro.
  • A new ad campaign underway through Learfield Communications features video, audio, digital and print ads across multiple media platforms throughout the state. Keep an eye out for your teammates!
  • Expanded partnerships with local chambers of commerce and job centers are boosting our visibility and extending our reach.
  • Our presence at career fairs and hiring events held throughout the state gives recruiters face-to-face contact with job seekers.
  • Individual facilities are trying out creative recruitment strategies — everything from pool parties to vehicle magnets.

Recruitment Incentive Program Gives Staff Up to $1,000 for Referrals

In the department's incentive program, staff can earn up to $1,000 for each successful referral of a new correctional officer or food service worker (cook).

  • A one-time payment of $250 will be added to the referring staff member’s semi-monthly salary after each applicant referred by the staff member has been hired and has successfully completed basic training. The staff member’s salary returns to the normal rate of pay after one pay cycle.
  • An additional one-time payment of $750 will be added to the referring staff member’s semi-monthly salary when each referred applicant has reached six months of employment with the department. The staff member’s salary returns to the normal rate of pay after one pay cycle.
  • Refer a new hire, and complete the Incentive Program form for corrections officers or cooks.
  • Referrals who are not hired within six months of receipt of the referral form will no longer be tracked or considered for the incentive program.

This program is open to all corrections staff except those designated as Missouri Department of Corrections recruiters or staff representing MODOC at recruiting events.

Learn more »

Strategic Plan

FY 22 Strategic Plan

The state’s business cycle runs on a fiscal year timeframe, this year from July 1, 2021, through June 30, 2022 (FY2022). Each year we articulate our priorities to support better government in Missouri through our strategic plan. In fiscal year 2022, our mission and our goals remain constant, but our strategic initiatives continue to evolve. We are building on past years' success and adding new priorities.

Take a look at our strategic plan and initiatives for fiscal year 2022.


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

Be a Better Listener


We're working hard to recruit and retain staff and to make our department a great place to work. Actively listening to coworkers helps create a safer and more welcoming environment. 


  • Be attentive and focused.
  • Ask questions, and get clarification.
  • Demonstrate your understanding by summarizing and repeating back what has been said.