CDCR's Week in Review Archives

CDCR Week in Review: October 27, 2023

Staff Highlight

Flag football offers balance for Officer Vogt

COR CO Preston Vogt

Officer Preston Vogt, a range safety officer at California State Prison-Corcoran (COR), finds balance between work and life through flag football.

As of October, Vogt has been with CDCR for four years. He started his career at Salinas Valley State Prison, and transferred to COR where he has been ever since.

Vogt is a range safety officer and recently received his Training-for-Trainers certification. He is a central valley local. His flag football team, the Small Town Ballers, is based out of Tulare.

Visit Inside CDCR to read the full article.

In the Community

ASP health fair

Avenal prison hosts staff health fair

Avenal State Prison recently held its annual health fair featuring various health-focused participants.

Organizations at the fair included:

  • Aflac
  • Kaiser Permante
  • Cupcake Route
  • United Health Medical
  • Office of Employee Health
  • California Correctional Supervisors Organization (CCSO)
  • and California Correctional Peace Officers Association (CCPOA) Triada.

The event coincided with health benefits open enrollment, providing staff with a valuable opportunity to explore their health plan options.

The fair was a resounding success with Keanu BBQ standing out as a crowd favorite. Butler Uniforms also showcased a range of cool merchandise.

“We extend our gratitude to all participants for their involvement in making this event a success,” said Avenal State Prison organizers.

SCC hosts softball/food sale event

SCC food sale supports Special Olympics of Northern California

Sierra Conservation Center (SCC) held a food sale for the incarcerated population at the institution. Special Olympics of Northern California received all the proceeds from the event. Outpost Deli of Soulsbyville provided all food items.

The event included an all-day softball tournament. Prison Sports Ministry and the local Special Olympics team, Tuolumne Ravens, made special appearances for the tournament. SCC raised approximately $4,000 for Special Olympics of Northern California.

In Our Institutions

CMC employee promotional ceremony

CMC hosts first Quarterly Promotional Ceremony

California Men’s Colony (CMC) hosted their first ever Promotional Ceremony to recognize twelve promoting staff members. CMC hosts the ceremony to acknowledge the achievements of motivated staff. The twelve staff members received a certificate of appreciation and personal acknowledgment by Warden Samuel and Chief Deputy Warden Gaughan. The institution invited families to be present for their loved one’s success.

VSP officers wear pink patches for breast cancer awareness

VSP staff unite for breast cancer awareness

In a display of solidarity, Valley State Prison (VSP) employees united to support breast cancer awareness by donning pink patches, badges, scrubs, shirts, and ties.

This inspiring initiative not only underscores the compassion and camaraderie among prison staff but also highlights the significance of raising awareness about breast cancer.

Around the world, millions of people and their families are affected by breast cancer.

By embracing the pink theme, VSP staff are making a powerful statement about the importance of early detection, support, and research for this disease.

The gesture demonstrates that breast cancer awareness transcends boundaries, uniting people from all walks of life. VSP’s commitment to this cause serves as a reminder that collective efforts can bring about positive change, even in the most unlikely places.

By wearing pink, VSP employees are fostering a sense of shared community and responsibility to fight breast cancer.

Visit Inside CDCR to read the full article.


SAC chalk art

SAC incarcerated enjoy chalk art

Local artist Scott Clark visited California State Prison, Sacramento (SAC). He provided the population with a variety of ideas and methods of chalk art. The population quickly learned the tricks of the trade and chalk art has become a popular activity. The Community Resource office supports this program which runs weekly. This provides individuals an opportunity to participate in art while making their environment colorful.

Ruben Perez helps tutor CRC incarcerated

CRC incarcerated support one another

Ruben Perez, Peer Literacy mentor, is one of 20 resident tutors at the California Rehabilitation Center (CRC). The resident tutors provide literacy and numeracy instruction to their peers. Peer Literacy Mentor Program (PLMP) mentors must complete two academic training modules totaling 270 hours and a 720-hour internship to be certified.  PLMP mentors are trained in the latest research-based instructional practices, including the use of graphic organizers. CRC literacy students earned 30 General Education Development diplomas during the past school year under the tutorage of certified PLMP tutors.

In the Media

San Quentin prison gets a new music program: ‘It will make an incredible difference’

Hoping to transform the lives of San Quentin prisoners through the healing power of music, longtime San Francisco vocal coach Essence Goldman has embarked on a new mission.

SQ music instructor standing with guitar

Through her nonprofit organization, Believe Music Heals, Goldman plans to introduce a program of musical training and performance within the prison walls of California’s oldest penitentiary, aiming to foster creativity, community and personal improvement.

Goldman, the driving force behind making ALS-stricken surfer Bernie Dalton’s musical dream a reality, recently secured approval for a 16-week music program at San Quentin State Prison, to begin on Nov. 1 and run through spring. The program will teach a select group of 25 incarcerated people how to sing, play musical instruments and compose original pieces, culminating in a compilation album of recordings written and performed by the participants.

Visit the San Francisco Chronicle to read the full article.

skateboard program in CCWF

Chowchilla inmates design skateboards to help local kids

Rodney Rodriguez collected a batch of freshly painted skateboards from the Central California Women’s Facility in Chowchilla.

The boards will be auctioned off to raise money for Fresno Skateboard Salvage, Rodriguez’s initiative to share skateboarding with kids who can’t afford to buy one.

The designs are unique. Each was created by an inmate like Angela Zuniga who loaded her board with symbolism.

“I tried to bring a lot of color to it and send a message. Butterflies mean freedom and like I said about the tiger, it’s being fierce,” said Zuniga.

The art represents more than meets the eye. It’s a step toward rehabilitation and giving to kids in the community, rather than taking.

Visit Your Central Valley to read the full article.

Sac State Professor Builds Communication Conduits

Sacramento State professor Dr. Ernest Uwazie is an internationally recognized expert on conflict resolution. He’s currently focused on incarceration and teaching people lessons that stretch their imaginings of what such conversations can look like and how impactful they can be.

Sacramento State professor enhances communication

Dr. Uwazie chairs the university’s division of criminal justice and serves as director of the university’s Center for African Peace and Conflict Resolution. He’s also leading a transformative restorative justice training program. The program trains people to facilitate meetings between victims and their offenders and prepares both parties for face-to-face interaction.

While currently funded through a two-year grant from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Dr. Uwazie has been doing the work since 2015. His work garnered attention, and dollars, as it fits into the state’s overall movement towards restorative justice, rehabilitation and reducing the rate of incarceration.

Visit The Observer to read the full article.

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