All Inside CDCR stories

A Day in the Life

Woman smiles at camera while other photos shows aerial view of a prison and Folsom Lake.

Correctional Business Manager keeps institution running

Since 2006, Sarah Shepherd has charted a unique career path, now serving as Correctional Business Manager at California State Prison, Sacramento. Someone unfamiliar with the job classification may think it is solely about number crunching. To reach her current position, Shepherd has gained experience working in different areas of the department, ranging from parole to the Division of Adult Institutions.

Above the Call

Ventura youth project-based learning art project for youth.

Ventura Youth Correctional Facility dives into project‑based learning

On October 1, students at Ventura Youth Correctional Facility’s Mary B. Perry High School took part in a Project Based Learning Exhibition (PBL). Hosted by Principal Dr. Obiako and made possible by a dedicated cohort of teachers, the project is rooted in a student-centered philosophy.

Appointments & Promotions

California capitol building.

Governor appoints three to key CDCR posts

Governor Gavin Newsom announced the following appointments on April 14: Katie James as Chief of the Office of Victim and Survivor Rights and Services; Giselle “Gigi” A. Matteson as Warden at California State Prison, Solano; and Matthew Atchley as Warden at Salinas Valley State Prison.

Awards & Appreciation

Three people stand beside a barbecue grill.

Avenal prison leadership thanks staff for dedication

For the first time in almost two years, the Employee Action Committee (EAC) with donations from the Avenal State Prison…

Beyond the Badge

School staff and guests at Dodger Stadium.

CCI Tehachapi Mountain Adult School staff bond during outings

The staff of Tehachapi Mountain Adult School (TMAS) at California Correctional Institute (CCI), along with those on the custody side, recently teamed up for a trip to Dodger Stadium. In all, 107 staff attended the outing, many of them experiencing their first Major League Baseball game.

CALPIA

Two incarcerated men stand beside a CALPIA digital services sign.

Incarcerated CALPIA participants come to rescue at Folsom State Prison

When CALPIA employee Jeff Snoozy collapsed to the floor, incarcerated participants rushed to his aid. “Without their help, there is a good chance that I would not be here today,” he said.

CDCR Time Capsule

A female correctional sergeant and female cadets.

1987: Department publication highlights need for females in corrections

Revisit this 1987 story originally published in Correction News. — When Daniel J. McCarthy first became a correctional officer in 1949, the California Department of Corrections prohibited women from working inside a prison. In fact, women weren’t even allowed to tour prisons.

Community Involvement

Pink patches and correctional sergeant.

CDCR staff don pink patches for breast cancer awareness

CDCR correctional staff are donning pink patches in a show of strength for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Proceeds from CDCR staff statewide support a wide variety of nonprofits helping find a cure for breast cancer.

DAPO

Two women with black bags full of clothing.

Nonprofit group helps parolees with new clothing

Alia Kruz, Founder of Bail Bag Organization, met with Parole Services Associate Latisha Mata, of Southern Region Adult Parole Programs, to discuss her mission to provide quality clothing and supplies to newly released parolees.

Division of Juvenile Justice

Ventura youth project-based learning art project for youth.

Ventura Youth Correctional Facility dives into project‑based learning

On October 1, students at Ventura Youth Correctional Facility’s Mary B. Perry High School took part in a Project Based Learning Exhibition (PBL). Hosted by Principal Dr. Obiako and made possible by a dedicated cohort of teachers, the project is rooted in a student-centered philosophy.

Dog News

Drako and Sergeant Brian Pyle.

Legendary CDCR K‑9 Drako passes away

CDCR and CCHCS staff are mourning the loss of K-9 contraband-detection legend Drako, who passed away on October 14, 2021.

Employee Health & Wellness

Woman facing camera leaning against brick post.

CDCR employee advocates for domestic violence victims

CDCR employee Roberta Sanchez was appointed this year to the Voices for Victims Coalition.

Inside CDCR recently sat down with her for an interview about her experiences and goals.

Firefighters

NKSP prison staff and a fire engine with supplies to donate.

NKSP jumps into action to assist crews fighting Windy, Complex Fires

Firefighters battling two large fires received some much needed help from staff at North Kern State Prison (NKSP). Chief Nurse Executive Kimberly Thomas, a Tulare County native, began the initiative to gather donations for the department.

Inside CDCR Videos

Our Promise: United Way video features mom and son.

Our Promise 2021: United Way offers wide web of support

The work United Way California Capitol Region does to support her community impressed Charlotte Micallef so much she has made supporting their efforts a family affair.

Jobs & Training

Disability employment awareness month poster.

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month

National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM), originally enacted by Congress in 1945, is recognized in October.

Obituaries

Drako and Sergeant Brian Pyle.

Legendary CDCR K‑9 Drako passes away

CDCR and CCHCS staff are mourning the loss of K-9 contraband-detection legend Drako, who passed away on October 14, 2021.

Prison Health Care

Three correctional staff at Calipatria Prison.

Calipatria State Prison hosts first ISUDT event

Calipatria State Prison (CAL) recently hosted its first Integrated Substance Use Disorder Treatment (ISUDT) Trivia Day Fair. The goal was to educate all staff about ISUDT.

Rehabilitation

Ventura youth project-based learning art project for youth.

Ventura Youth Correctional Facility dives into project‑based learning

On October 1, students at Ventura Youth Correctional Facility’s Mary B. Perry High School took part in a Project Based Learning Exhibition (PBL). Hosted by Principal Dr. Obiako and made possible by a dedicated cohort of teachers, the project is rooted in a student-centered philosophy.

Secretary's Corner

Heroes work here sign with the CDCR logo and an American flag.

Secretary, Receiver thank staff for their dedication to public service

As we enter the month of May, and reflect on the year behind us and the one before us, we wanted to send a collective thank you to all of our incredible staff across the state. Whether you are in one of our 35 prisons, working in a parole office, in DJJ, in a field office, or in headquarters, thank you for your hard work. Thank you for your dedication and for serving the people of our great state, your communities, and your families with love and unwavering commitment, even as we faced the biggest health crisis our world has seen in a century.

Sports

first place medals and two prison staff members.

Two Solano staff take first place at US Police and Fire Championships

When it comes to shooting hoops, two CSP-Solano staff members slam-dunked a first-place win at the U.S. Police and Fire Championships.

Other stories

A decorated cake has the words Happy 245th Birthday Marine Corps.

Avenal prison staff honor Veterans Day, Marine Corps birthday with cakes

Avenal State Prison Correctional Lt. and former Marine John Mendiboure continued an annual tradition of honoring the institutions’ veterans by holding a cake-cutting ceremony in the snack bar.

Unlocking History

Paso Robles facility time capsule contents show newspapers, photos and booklets.

1954 time capsule opened at Paso Robles Youth Correctional Facility

The first youths arrived at Paso de Robles Youth Correctional Facility on Sept. 30, 1947, a former 200-acre Army airfield purchased by the state for $8,000 and run by the former California Youth Authority. In 1954, a time capsule was put into the Administration Building.

Victim & Survivor Rights

Woman facing camera leaning against brick post.

CDCR employee advocates for domestic violence victims

CDCR employee Roberta Sanchez was appointed this year to the Voices for Victims Coalition.

Inside CDCR recently sat down with her for an interview about her experiences and goals.