PHOENIX — Gov. Doug Ducey has found a new director to oversee Arizona's prison system.
Ducey announced Monday that David Shinn has been appointed as the new head of the Arizona Department of Corrections.
Shinn is currently the assistant director for the Program Review Division of the Federal Bureau of Prisons in Washington, D.C.
He replaces Charles Ryan, who retired last month amid ongoing controversies.
The department is appealing a 2018 contempt-of-court ruling that found Ryan failed to honor promises in a legal settlement to improve prison health care.
A report from former state Supreme Court justices said he was "surprisingly uninformed" for too long about poor functioning of prison locks.
According to Ducey, Shinn has more than 30 years of experience serving as a corrections officer and as an executive leader.
You can read the full statement from Gov. Ducey's office below:
Governor Doug Ducey today announced the appointment of David Shinn as the director of the Arizona Department of Corrections. Shinn, who currently serves as the Assistant Director for the Program Review Division of the Federal Bureau of Prisons in Washington, D.C., brings over 30 years of law enforcement executive leadership experience and has served with the Federal Bureau of Prisons since 1991.
“Our goal was to identify a leader with extensive experience in the corrections field, a record of solving problems and getting results, and a passion for public service. David Shinn is that leader,” said Governor Ducey. “David brings a depth of experience up and down the corrections system — from serving as a corrections officer to overseeing thousands of staff and inmates as a complex warden and ensuring high-quality operational procedures for one of the largest prison systems in the world. What’s more, his proven commitment to improved outcomes for officers and inmates enables him to continue the innovative partnerships that have helped Arizona reduce recidivism at record rates. My sincere thanks goes out to David for his willingness to serve in this crucial position at Arizona’s largest state agency.”
“I am truly honored to be appointed director of the Arizona Department of Corrections and for the opportunity to serve along with the more than 8,500 dedicated men and women of the Department,” said David Shinn. “Above all else, I am fully committed to prioritizing the safety and security of our officers, staff and inmates — while excited to build upon Arizona’s already substantial efforts to prepare those serving their time for success after release. Having devoted more than three decades of my life to serving the public, I am humbled by the confidence placed in me and grateful for the opportunity to continue to serve.”
Most recently, Shinn served as the Assistant Director of the Program Review Division for the Federal Bureau of Prisons. In this position, he was responsible for leading the internal and external audit divisions where he provided oversight of more than 575 audits annually and developed training objectives for supervisors, managers and executives. Shinn also participated in the selection of Chief Executive Officers for 122 institutions across the country and served as Director of the Bureau’s Equal Employment Opportunity program, where he engaged with staff to help resolve concerns brought forward by any of the Bureau’s more than 38,000 employees.
Shinn has also served as Chief Executive Officer for the Federal Correctional Complex in Victorville, California as well as the Metropolitan Detention Center in Los Angeles and the Federal Detention Center in Honolulu before that. In these roles, Shinn provided fiscal and operational leadership, implemented innovative programs and trained staff in enhanced security, mental health management procedures and more.
Before joining the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Shinn served in the United States Marine Corps from 1987 to 1991.
His first day as director will be October 21, 2019.