Office of the Director

ADCRR Director Ryan Thornell

Ryan Thornell, Ph.D.


Office of the Director Organizational Chart

Ryan Thornell, Director of the Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation, and Reentry (ADCRR), is a respected and innovative leader with two decades of extensive correctional leadership experience. His contribution and commitment to the modernization of corrections is widely recognized for its ability to balance enhanced public safety by promoting systems-wide engagement for greater access to services and resources by those within ADCRR's care and supervision, while also improving the overall wellness of staff.

Director Thornell and his leadership team at the ADCRR are instilling a vision of Reimagining Corrections across Arizona. Each day, the thousands of dedicated and talented ADCRR team members aim to improve outcomes. These hard working staff seek innovative and modern approaches to corrections within an organizational culture that broadens mutual respect, integrity, and collaboration while also providing fiscal responsibility and agency transparency. As thoughtful action is taken on these important fronts, Arizona residents can be confident that the Department is working toward safer institutions, effective service delivery, and improved public safety across Arizona.

Under the Director's leadership, the ADCRR is committed to an inclusive and diverse environment where the talents and expertise of every ADCRR team member are recognized, valued, and leveraged to create positive outcomes for the Department's stakeholders and constituents.

In this effort, Dr. Thornell guides the Department utilizing his experience to grow community partnerships while also strengthening the disciplines of safety and security operations, programming, treatment services, education, and skills training for incarcerated individuals to help ensure meaningful change and success upon release.

Prior to being appointed Director of ADCRR by Governor Katie Hobbs in January 2023, Director Thornell served as the Deputy Commissioner for the Maine Department of Corrections. There he was recognized for developing significant initiatives resulting in improved policies and practices around incarceration and correctional reform. He began his career as a frontline correctional officer in the South Dakota Department of Corrections, and has since served in a number of roles and experiences during his career, including roles within correctional facilities and in community corrections. He received his Master's degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Cincinnati and his Doctorate in Political Science from the University of South Dakota. He is a proud father and husband.