Women in Corrections

The first employee hired to work in the Department was a woman, Bonnie Sizer, who started as Director Allen Cook's secretary and later became the Employee Assistance Supervisor. In the early days of the Department, security positions were held only by men. However, many women soon began to seek a career in the corrections field.

In 1979, Terry Maloney became the first woman promoted to Sergeant. By 1981, there were 130 women serving as protective service workers in ADC, according to the "Women as Professionals" report, which said, "This small group of women had to overcome many obstacles in the quest for a career in the corrections field." In 1980, Officer Patti Brown was recognized as the Outstanding Female Correctional Officer for ADC, by Contact, a national criminal justice clearinghouse, and Mabel White was the first Correctional Service Officer who finished the ADC Academy in March 1982. Kathy Atwood became the first ADC Lieutenant in a male institution in 1982. Ann Martinez was named the first female Captain in 1980. Janet Ells was promoted in 1994 to become the first female in ADC to achieve the rank of Major.

In the 1980's four women held executive positions: Camille Graham and Marge Thompson, Deputy Directors; Carol Moore Hurtt, Assistant Director of Juvenile/Community Services; and Marilyn Wilkens, Assistant Director, ACI. The first woman Warden of a prison complex was Meg Savage, who became Warden at ASPC-Florence in 1996.

Dora Schriro, appointed by Governor Janet Napolitano in July, 2003, was the first woman to lead the Department.

Today, women hold many security, supervisory, management and executive positions in the Department.