Staff Newsletter | February 2022

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missouri department of corrections

Employee Newsletter   |  February 2022

On the Move

Department to Shift Operations in Cameron


On Jan. 19, Governor Mike Parson released his administration's fiscal year 2023 annual budget proposal for state government. It includes a plan to transfer operations from Western Missouri Correctional Center (WMCC) to Crossroads Correctional Center (CRCC) in Cameron.

In 2019, the department consolidated CRCC with WMCC to help improve staffing, safety and services. WMCC was selected to remain operational because it was the larger facility and could accommodate the consolidation without creating overcrowding at other facilities.

Now COVID and other significant challenges have placed a strain on employees and offenders. Staffing shortages cause more overtime for staff and affect programming and rehabilitative activities for offenders.

Missouri’s prison population decline has allowed the department to empty housing units at multiple locations. In Cameron, with the reduced offender population, operations can be moved from the larger WMCC to the smaller CRCC, resulting in better staffing coverage and less overtime. The department plans to transfer staff from their current positions at WMCC to the same positions at CRCC.

If approved by the Missouri General Assembly, the move will likely occur in 2022 — but not immediately. It will be designed to minimize disruptions for employees, offenders and overall operations. If you have questions, please contact the administrative team at your worksite.

Governor Announces Proposed Investment in State Workers

Plan Includes Salary Increases, Expanded Benefits, Professional Development

Parson  State of the State 2022

During the 2022 State of the State Address, Governor Mike Parson announced his administration's legislative priorities and budget proposal for the coming year. The proposal includes funding to improve salaries and resources for Missouri state government employees.

Salary Increases

Governor Parson is recommending a 5.5% cost-of-living pay increase for all state team members, as well as funding to ensure that no state team member would make less than $15 per hour. Parson is seeking immediate approval of this supplemental spending bill from the Missouri General Assembly so that pay increases could be seen in Feb. 28 paychecks.

This proposed investment, if approved, would bring the Correctional Officer I annual starting salary to $37,980, an increase of more than $8,700, or about 30%, over the last five years. During the 2021 legislative session, Governor Parson recommended and the Missouri General Assembly approved pay increases for certain classes of corrections employees — food service workers, corrections officers, sergeants and lieutenants — ranging from 5.8% to 15%. These increases went into effect July 1, 2021. The General Assembly also approved a 2% pay increase for all other state employees, which went into effect Jan. 1, 2022.

Deferred Compensation Matching Contribution

The Governor's proposal calls for the state to contribute $25 per month to the deferred compensation plans of all state employees who invest $25 or more each month to their plans. If passed, this change would mark the first time since March 2010 that state employees have received matching funds in deferred compensation plans.

Stable Health Care Premiums

In fiscal year 2023, the cost of the health insurance premium for state employees enrolled in the Missouri Consolidated Health Care Plan (MCHCP) will stay the same for most employees and will decrease for those who have three or more children.

Professional Development Rewards

The Governor's budget proposal includes funding for professional development rewards for the highest-performing 10% of staff members in each department. Each recipient of this reward will be eligible for up to $1,500 to spend on conference registration, travel costs, tuition assistance, certifications and other professional development expenses.

Leadership Externship

The Governor has proposed funding for the creation of a State of Missouri Leadership Externship Program, in which eight employees would would spend six months working in a different department, using the opportunity to complete specific projects and expand their knowledge of state government.

View the full budget brief, and take a look at the Governor's top priorities.

Recruiting the Future

New Competition Tests Facilities' Staff Recruitment Skills

The Missouri Department of Corrections Talent Acquisition Team is sponsoring a staff recruitment and retention contest for Division of Adult Institutions sites and Division of Probation & Parole transition centers. This competition is designed to encourage, incentivize and enhance recruitment and retention strategies, ultimately resulting in an increase in the number of new staff hired and retained.


Part One: The Recruiting Competition

Duration: Sunday, January 30, 2022 – Saturday, April 30, 2022

How it Works: Each facility uses innovative recruitment strategies to hire new correctional offers and tracks the number hired during the Recruiting Competition.

Part Two: The Retention Competition

Duration: Sunday, May 1, 2022 – Saturday, October 29, 2022 (begins immediately following the Recruiting Competition)

How it Works: Each facility uses innovative retention strategies to retain new correctional officers and tracks the percentage of new hires acquired during the Recruiting Competition who are still employed at the end of the Retention Competition. If a tie occurs in the Retention Competition, the number of staff hired in the recruiting phase will serve as the tiebreaker.

Sign Up!

Each facility wishing to participate must submit an application (email format) for each competition. Apply by Feb. 7 for the Recruitment Competition and by May 1 for the Retention Competition. The application should include:

  • Competition Leader – Contact name, contact information and site name.
  • Plan of Action – What the site will do to boost recruitment and/or retention.

Read all the rules »

Incentives & Acknowledgements

  1. The winning Recruiting Competition team will receive an onsite, all-staff barbecue, complete with desserts, presented by the Talent Acquisition Team.
  2. The winning Retention Competition team will also receive an onsite, all-staff barbecue, complete with desserts, presented by the Talent Acquisition Team.
  3. To incentivize all sites, regardless of current staffing levels, an additional prize will be awarded to any site that finishes the nine-month competition with zero vacancies. Those sites will also receive an onsite, all-staff barbecue, complete with desserts, presented by the Talent Acquisition Team.
  4. Winners will be announced in the staff newsletter.

EVERYONE BENEFITS: The Talent Acquisition Team will compile best practices and present them at a wardens’ meeting and in the staff newsletter so each site can benefit from proven techniques.

SUBMIT COMPETITION APPLICATIONS TO: with the subject line: WINNING. All competition applications should be sent to the same address with the same subject line.

Preserve, Protect & Defend

New Tradition Enters Basic Training Graduation Ceremonies

oath - central region

An oath of service has been incorporated into the graduation ceremonies for all new correctional officers completing basic training. The classes graduating at the eastern, western and central training academies in January were the first to take the oath. Watch the video from the Central Region Training Center »


Oath of Service

On my honor, I will respect the trust that the Missouri Department of Corrections has placed in me by upholding my badge, my integrity, my character and the public trust. I will faithfully and to the best of my ability preserve, protect and defend the safety of my community while also protecting the rights and dignity of those under my stewardship. I will have the courage to hold myself and others accountable for our actions so that the trust of my community is not broken. I will maintain the highest ethical standards and uphold the mission and values of the Missouri Department of Corrections.

Referral Program Expansion

Recruitment Incentive Program Now Includes Part-Time Officers

The Department of Corrections offers an ongoing recruitment incentive program in which current staff can earn up to $1,000 for each successful referral of a new staff member in a correctional officer, food service worker or teacher position. Now that program has expanded to also include a payment of up to $500 for each successful referral of a part-time correctional officer.

  • A one-time payment of $250 for a full-time correctional officer or $125 for a part-time correctional officer 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 for a full-time correctional officer or $375 for a part-time correctional officer will be added to the referring staff member’s semi-monthly salary when each applicant reaches six months of employment with the department.
  • Refer a new hire, and complete the appropriate Incentive Program form. Forms are available on the K: drive at Policies, Procedures, and Forms\Forms-References\DOC-931 Forms.
  • Referrals that do not result in hires 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.

Scholarship Opportunity

Higher Education Funding Available for Corrections Professionals & Families


The 2022 application period is now open for the Correctional Peace Officers Foundation scholarship program serving active CPOF members and qualifying family members enrolled full time in higher-education degree programs.

Applications and documentation are due Friday, April 15, 2022. Visit the CPOF website for eligibility requirements and application instructions.

Tell Us How We're Doing

Share Your Feedback Through the Quarterly Pulse Survey by Feb. 4

quarterly pulse survey

The 12th Quarterly Pulse Survey (QPS) is open to all state government workers until 11:59 p.m. Friday, Feb. 4. The purpose of this survey is to gather real-time feedback from you about how our department is doing and how we can get better together. Your input helps shape the Governor’s and department leaders’ priorities. In this survey, questions focus on direction, leadership, employee engagement and professional development. We revisit the same questions twice a year to monitor how feedback changes over time. Please take 5 minutes to provide your input.

Ready? Take the survey

Questions? Watch this video

COVID Leave Guidance

Confused about what to do if you test positive for COVID or have been in close contact with a COVID patient? We can help. Use the decision trees below to determine what course of action you must take, depending on test results, symptoms, exposure and vaccination status.

covid leave flow chart 1covid leave chart 2

Download, print and/or share the PDF »

Immunity Boost

COVID Booster Helps Prevents Serious Illness


The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have approved COVID-19 vaccine booster shots for all adults. It is strongly recommended for people who are at high risk of infection because they live or work in high-risk settings. This includes corrections staff.

Protect yourself, your family and your team by getting a COVID booster shot. Find a vaccination provider at

September 2021 Employee of the Month

Vicki Hildebrand

Vicki Hildebrand, an institutional activity coordinator (IAC) at Women’s Eastern Reception, Diagnostic & Correctional Center in Vandalia, finds innovative ways to prepare incarcerated Missourians for release.

While pandemic safety protocols, staffing challenges and security issues have presented obstacles for reentry programming in recent months, Hildebrand has found a way to not only help ready more people for reentry but also boost facility safety. She researched and established a virtual learning system for pre-release classes and then helped expand the project for use with mental health and parenting programs. Now she’s helping IACs in other facilities get virtual classrooms up and running.

Hildebrand’s ingenuity serves as an inspiration for the corrections team.

Celebrating Successes

Blazing New Trails

Vandalia Ashland Gradds

Two Women’s Eastern Reception, Diagnostic & Correctional Center residents have become higher-education pioneers. Diane Greer and Aimee Herring are the first two incarcerated Missouri women to earn associate’s degrees through the Ashland University Correctional Education Program.

In the tablet-based program, people in Missouri state prisons can take college courses and earn credits toward degrees. In the year 2021, 48 students at five facilities graduated from Ashland University, earning 44 associate's degrees and four bachelor's degrees.

Building Entrepreneurs


John Williams recently walked out of Western Reception, Diagnostic & Correctional Center and into a chance at a new life. Williams is the first official client for the Kansas City-based SWAGG INC, which stands for “Serve Witness And Give Guidance; Inspiration Never Ceases.”

Founded by formerly incarcerated Kansas City resident Na’im Al-Amin, the nonprofit provides programming and advocacy for people recently released from prison, focusing on mentorship, employment and entrepreneurial development. Al-Amin’s goal is to foster a mindset of ownership in clients, helping people to take control of their stories, their finances and their futures. SWAGG recently was featured on KSHB 41 TV in Kansas City. Watch »

Caring for a Friend


Sometimes a dog handler in the Puppies for Parole program develops such a strong bond with a dog that a family member agrees to adopt it, later reuniting the pair outside prison. For the handler’s release and the dog’s adoption to coincide, though, is truly serendipitous. That’s what happened last month at Missouri Eastern Correctional Center (MECC). Handler William Smith’s family applied to adopt Smith’s trainee, a pit bull mix named Slider, to whom he’d become attached. Partnering shelter Stray Rescue of St. Louis worked closely with Smith's family throughout the adoption process and let Slider stay at MECC longer than usual so that he and Smith could leave together and begin a new chapter.

Finding Faith

Baptism MTC

Eleven Maryville Treatment Center residents have officially joined the Christian faith. With help from Rise Up Prison Ministry volunteers Eunice Guier and Johnny Allen, the offenders were baptized in the MTC chapel in a ceremony organized by Chaplain Andrew Yocum.

Throughout the state, prison chaplains and volunteers support the religious and spiritual needs of incarcerated Missourians of all faiths.

Getting Support, Giving Thanks

Probation and Parole District 11 Officer Tracy Hughes recently received a thank-you letter from a client newly discharged from supervision.

"This letter is to let people know that the probation and parole system isn't what some people make it out to be. It's a system that is set up to help those that want and need help to better themselves. The world is not a perfect place, but when someone goes out of their way to try and make it better, it needs to be recognized. Tracy Hughes is a probation officer who goes above and beyond. I was really struggling when I met him, and he has helped me change my life. I know that it was hard work, but it sure helped having Tracy's guidance. Thank you, Tracy, for believing in me and being there."

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:

Lieutenant D'Ann Cagle

Algoa Correctional Center


Originally, I was nominated by an existing member of the team at Tipton Correctional Center (TCC) and was sent to boot camp. In the beginning, I was relatively unaware of the impact ambassadors make inside the institution. After attending the class, I realized a lot of the practices from the program are things I had been practicing already, and that’s why I was selected.

I began my journey with the Missouri Department of Corrections after working for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. As much as I value all the experience I gained in Texas, there were a lot of things that could improve. There were no programs in place that equipped our staff with the tools that The Corrections Way (TCW) teaches. Once I began to understand the value and impact I made on those around me, even as a brand-new correctional officer, I was 100% on board.

When I promoted to Sergeant at Tipton Correctional Center, I knew I wanted to promote a positive attitude and change. The TCW team at Tipton began to implement more leadership walks, small workshops and weekly emails from our command staff to promote motivation and staff appreciation.

Since promoting to lieutenant at Algoa Correctional Center, I have volunteered my time to go to the Central Region Training Academy to speak to the new staff about TCW. I share my own personal value premise with staff members at my institution and help guide them to see what they bring to the table. I believe TCW will help us all to leave the department better than we found it.

Help, Hope & Healing

Seminar Supports Corrections Professionals Affected by Trauma and Stress


Registration is now open for the spring 2022 Post Critical Incident Seminar for staff experiencing post-traumatic stress.

The Post Critical Incident Seminar (PCIS) is a three-day intensively focused therapeutic event designed to assist corrections personnel experiencing traumatic stress following involvement in a serious incident.

Trauma exposure can change the human psyche and one’s worldview, which may make it difficult to return to a normal level of daily functioning. This event will encourage corrections personnel with similar experiences to convene and begin or further their recovery process, turning trauma into strength. Behavioral health service providers from outside the department, as well as specially trained peers familiar with corrections culture, will facilitate support.

How does it work? Who should attend? Get details here. Apply here. For more information, Meckenzie Hayes at 573-526-3021 or


Team Training


The department's peer support program, the Peer Action Care Team (P.A.C.T.), is made up of staff at each worksite or Probation and Parole region who are able to provide information, resources and confidential support to employees experiencing personal or workplace stress or potentially traumatic events.

Thirty P.A.C.T. members from across the state have been selected to attend Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) training this month. Presented by Missouri Highway Patrol Sergeant Trois Maloney, the CISM curriculum follows the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation model for crisis intervention and response. The team hopes to train additional P.A.C.T. members in the future.

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

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.