Beyond the Badge

CDCR is a tradition for Morales family

Five family members in correctional officer uniforms.
From left are Miguel Morales Jr., Miguel Sr., new officer Jeremiah, Martha and Zachary.

After Morales patriarch joined CDCR, four others followed

Two decades ago, Miguel Morales became a CDCR correctional officer, forging a career path followed by four of his other family members.

The most recent Morales to wear the CDCR badge is Jeremiah, who graduated with Academy Class 1-23A.

“As of July 2023, I will have worked at Calipatria State Prison for 20 years,” said Morales. “My oldest son Miguel Morales Jr. has worked for CDCR for nine years and is currently employed at Richard J. Donovan (RJD) Correctional Facility. My third son Zachary has been at RJD for seven years. My wife, Martha, has been employed at Calipatria State Prison for six years. Now my youngest son, Jeremiah, just graduated the Academy and will report to Calipatria. We all are Correctional Officers at our current prisons.”

Morales said he’s proud of his family and believes they joined CDCR because they saw the benefits first-hand.

“Ever since I was younger, I wanted to be in some form of law enforcement because I love the camaraderie, the honor and protecting others,” said Morales. “My family chose to follow in my footsteps because of what I was able to do for my family like financial stability, great benefits, and all while being in a law enforcement profession.”

With Jeremiah’s graduation, five members of the Morales family wear the badge.

“I am very happy and proud that Jeremiah has chosen CDCR as a career choice and I am sure he will make all of us proud,” he said.

He also has a daughter who forged her own career path in a different field.

After-academy training has improved

“While working at Calipatria State Prison, I have seen lots of Correctional Officers come and go. Training has improved tremendously since I was at the Academy. This gives me the confidence that any new Officer will be able to handle any task at hand with the utmost respect, professionalism and honor,” Morales said. “So far, my most rewarding opportunity here, has been to have new Correctional Officers (fresh) from the Academy shadow me during their first week.”

CDCR offers more than correctional officer positions

“When I’m trying to encourage someone to join the department, I like to let them know that CDCR is not just being a Correctional Officer,” he said. “There are so many different opportunities and advancements available to all.”

For 20 years, the Morales family has helped CDCR fulfill its mission.

“We are all proud to be correctional officers,” he said. “It is a passion, tradition and hopefully a legacy.”

Interested applicants can apply online at

To learn more about the correctional officer selection process, watch this video.

By Don Chaddock, Inside CDCR editor
Photos by Rob Stewart, TV Specialist