Jim Brown, retired lieutenant, passes away at 76

Jim Brown in front of flags
James "Jim" Brown

Folsom prison museum volunteer was also author, historian

James “Jim” Brown, a retired lieutenant from Folsom State Prison, passed away July 15, 2022. Brown, a longtime employee and volunteer, was also a historian. He actively promoted prison history through the museum as well as his book, “Images of America: Folsom Prison.” He was 76 years old and despite retiring in 2002, continued volunteering to run the prison museum until his passing.

Brown began his CDCR career in June 1970 as a correctional officer at Folsom State Prison. Promoting to sergeant in 1985, he was assigned to various posts including CSP-Sacramento, CSP-Corcoran, Backgrounds Investigator, Pelican Bay, and Centinela.

He promoted to correctional lieutenant in 1994, assigned to the Special Services Unit. The following year, he transferred to Folsom, where he remained until retiring in June 2002.

Three years before retiring, Brown also took on the additional responsibility of running the Folsom State Prison Museum. He continued running the prison until he passed away.

“Jim dedicated 52 years of his life to Folsom State Prison and the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. He loved his career and all the good people he met along the way. Jim was friend and mentor to many and great source of knowledge,” according to a statement issued by the prison.

“We wish to extend our sincere condolences to the family and friends of Jim Brown during this difficult time. He will truly be missed by those who knew him,” the statement concluded.

Brown was heavily involved in organizations for correctional peace officers and retirees.

“We, at the Correctional Peace Officers Foundation, are saddened (by) the passing of our National Director and Treasurer, James (Jim) Brown. Jim joined the Board of Directors in 2015, after a long and distinguished correctional career,” according to a statement issued by the organization. “Jim was an active member of CPOF, California Correctional Peace Officer Association Retired Chapter, International Police Association and Northern California Peace Officer Association. Jim took over as Operations Manager of the Retired Correctional Peace Officers Museum at Folsom Prison in 2001.”

Read more tributes to staff and retirees who have passed away.

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