Inside CDCR News Blog

FEATURED STORIES

Woman holds a breast cancer awareness pink CDCR patch.

For Michele Taylor, breast cancer awareness holds special meaning

After surviving a breast cancer battle, Michele Taylor, a retired annuitant, has an appreciation for October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month. At 33 years old, Taylor endured surgery then fought through an excruciating 11 months of chemotherapy along with 7 weeks of radiation therapy, all while raising her 10-year-old daughter. Today, she’s a doting grandmother.

VIDEOS

Man wearing face mask reads in the CSP-Solano book club.

CSP‑Solano book club inspires learning

The incarcerated population at California State Prison, Solano, are finding inspiration through a book club. Book clubs are instructive, improve linguistic skills, foster transformative change, and serve as communities where members hone their writing abilities. Through a letter-writing curriculum developed in collaboration with Dr. Nicole Fox from Sacramento State University.


Officers at an information booth.

Employee benefits fair held at CIM

On September 28, the Chino Valley Employees’ Association (CVEA) at the California Institution for Men hosted the annual Employee Health and Benefits Fair. It was the first time the fair was held in over two years because of the pandemic.

Officer Webb and Warden Robertson in a decorated prison lobby.

Meet Officer Michael Webb, keeper of the gate

For over two decades, Correctional Officer Michael “Mike” Webb has helped CDCR fulfill its mission. As the General Population (GP) Entrance Gate Officer for Pelican Bay State Prison, he is the first line of defense in the entry and exit of the secure perimeter.

REHABILITATION

Basketball goes into net at San Quentin as referee holds up three fingers.

Golden State Warriors return to San Quentin

The Golden State Warriors faced off against the San Quentin Warriors for the first time since the pandemic. On Friday, Sept. 16, Golden State Warriors staff ranging from players and coaches to support, returned to San Quentin State Prison to continue their decade-long face off.

Man in front of Native American tribal flags while holding feathers.

CDCR Native American Spiritual Leaders guide with purpose

As Native American tribes gathered to celebrate their shared heritage and culture, CDCR staff were on hand to answer questions about working for the department, including Michael Hermann, a spiritual leader.

Man wearing Native American clothing.

Navajo Code Talkers honored at CTF

Correctional Training Facility (CTF) recently hosted Navajo Code Talkers Day on the Facility B Yard. The event featured guest speakers, a wreath laying and traditional performances.

ABOVE THE CALL

2022 Medal of Valor ceremony with people in chairs.

CDCR honors employees at 2022 Medal of Valor

At its 2022 Medal of Valor Ceremony, the CDCR honored 44 people for their bravery in responding to crises and life-threatening situations as well as exemplary work of benefit to the department and the community.

Blythe police arrested a suspect on weapon and drug charges.

Correctional Officer helps Blythe Police apprehend suspect

While driving toward Blythe, Correctional Officer Harold Gaskill stopped to help a police officer struggling with a suspect.

Firefighter sprays hot spots in burned out building.

CDCR, MCRP staff save two following explosion

Chatting in the parking lot after their shift, two MCRP staff were suddenly shaken by a large explosion. That’s when they jumped into action.

BEYOND THE BADGE

Woman holds a breast cancer awareness pink CDCR patch.

For Michele Taylor, breast cancer awareness holds special meaning

After surviving a breast cancer battle, Michele Taylor, a retired annuitant, has an appreciation for October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month. At 33 years old, Taylor endured surgery then fought through an excruciating 11 months of chemotherapy along with 7 weeks of radiation therapy, all while raising her 10-year-old daughter. Today, she’s a doting grandmother.

Officer Webb and Warden Robertson in a decorated prison lobby.

Meet Officer Michael Webb, keeper of the gate

For over two decades, Correctional Officer Michael “Mike” Webb has helped CDCR fulfill its mission. As the General Population (GP) Entrance Gate Officer for Pelican Bay State Prison, he is the first line of defense in the entry and exit of the secure perimeter.

Four people stand on a dirt road, one of them wearing a full CDCR uniform.

CMF Officer Duenas, brother run for charity

When the Sacramento Police Department asked for help raising funds, CDCR Correctional Officer Gilbert Duenas answered. The annual 5k Run with the Cops was held Sept. 17 in Old Sacramento, raising money for the Law Enforcement Chaplaincy of Sacramento and the Sacramento Police Canine Association. Fellow CDCR employees also took part in the run.

HISTORY

San Quentin gallows and portrait of executioner Amos Lunt.

Tragic tale of Amos Lunt, the San Quentin executioner

After witnessing the horrors of the Civil War, working as a police officer and finally serving as San Quentin hangman, Amos Lunt spent his final years in an insane asylum. A century ago, little was known about trauma’s impact on mental health. This is the story of a staff member who, if diagnosed today, would have had access to a range of mental health services and peer support.

Two men stand beside open graves.

San Quentin grave markers tell stories of two men

Two inmate numbers on grave markers reveal the stories of a miner and a young gambler who landed at San Quentin in the early 1900s. The markers showed up at the San Quentin Prison Museum, leaving museum co-founder and volunteer Jeff Craemer a bit stumped.

Man hands a woman paperwork.

Meet CDCR’s first parole agents

Among the first parole agents were a fingerprint expert, a man involved in charitable causes, and a former deputy sheriff.