WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Attorney General announced today that Harley G. Lappin will be appointed the new Director of the Bureau of Prisons (BOP), following the retirement of Kathleen Hawk Sawyer in the upcoming months. During Dr. Hawk Sawyer's service, the inmate population doubled, staff increased by 50 percent, and the number of institutions increased from 72 to 102 with another 17 under construction.
"Kathy Hawk Sawyer has been a tremendous asset to the Department of Justice. Dr. Hawk Sawyer's successful management of the Bureau of Prisons is especially impressive given the unprecedented growth the Bureau has experienced during her tenure," said Attorney General John Ashcroft. "Dr. Hawk Sawyer is a leader of the highest integrity and professionalism. I thank her for her outstanding service to the Bureau of Prisons, the Department of Justice and America, and wish her the very best upon her retirement."
The Attorney General added, "I am confident that the great traditions of the Bureau of Prisons will be carried forward through the appointment of Harley Lappin to succeed Director Hawk Sawyer. Mr. Lappin's experience, dedication and extraordinary career of service to the Department of Justice will benefit the Bureau as it faces future challenges."
Mr. Lappin currently serves as BOP's Regional Director for the Mid-Atlantic Region. Mr. Lappin joined the Bureau of Prisons in 1985 as a case manager and has served in roles of increasing responsibility, including as Warden at the United States Penitentiary in Terre Haute, Indiana. In that position, which he held until being named Regional Director in 2001, Mr. Lappin oversaw the only two federal executions during the last 39 years.
Mr. Lappin heads BOP's Management Reengineering Team and the "Forward Thinking" workgroup. In 2001, Mr. Lappin received the Attorney General's Award for Excellence in Management. He is a member of the American Correctional Association's Standards Committee, which sets standards for the accreditation of correctional institutions nationally. Mr. Lappin holds a bachelors degree from Indiana University and a master's degree from Kent State University.
Director Kathleen Hawk Sawyer said, "It has been a great honor to serve as Director of the Bureau of Prisons for more than 10 years. The Bureau is an outstanding organization made up of truly dedicated public servants who do a very difficult job with little public recognition. It has been a real privilege for me to serve under Attorney General John Ashcroft."
The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) is responsible for the custody and care of approximately 165,000 inmates housed in facilities operated by, and under contract with, the BOP. The Bureau protects public safety by ensuring that federal offenders serve their sentences of imprisonment in institutions that are safe, humane, cost-efficient and appropriately secure. Additionally, the Bureau helps reduce future criminality by encouraging inmates to participate in programs to develop the skills necessary to become productive members of society upon release from prison. The Bureau has played an essential role in our country's response to crime. Since 1980, the federal prison population has grown from 24,000 inmates to more than 165,000 inmates.
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