BATON ROUGE, La. – The North American Association of Wardens and Superintendents (NAAWS) has named Department of Public Safety and Corrections Warden Jerry Goodwin its “Warden of the Year.” Goodwin was selected from a nationwide field of wardens, and recognized for his innovative works as the leader of David Wade Correctional Center in North Louisiana. The NAAWS Warden of the Year award recognizes a warden who has gone the extra mile to solve problems in their organization, involve themselves in community and local organization, and mentored in the development of others.
“I’m proud of Warden Goodwin for the well-deserved recognition he is receiving,” said Department of Public Safety and Corrections Secretary James M. Le Blanc. “Warden Goodwin is a dedicated employee who worked his way up through the ranks from a corrections officer all the way to regional warden. He thinks outside of the box, and has been successful in employing programs aimed at reducing recidivism and keeping the public safe.”
Goodwin began his corrections career as a corrections officer with the Department in 1984. During his 33 years with the Department, he worked his way up through the ranks, and was named warden of David Wade Correctional Center in 2008. In 2016, he was promoted to regional warden with oversight of several other state correctional facilities in North Louisiana.
Warden Goodwin inspired and built unity in a time of change. With the closing of a state satellite facility, he thought outside the box. He expanded a partnership with Bossier Parish Sheriff’s Office to relocate the Steve Hoyle Intensive Substance Abuse Program, the state’s only extensive residential substance abuse program, to the Bossier Sheriff’s Office, allowing this program to continue its success. This helped forge a stronger alliance with local law enforcement, positively impacting offenders, staff, and the public.
Warden Goodwin is committed to outside agency assistance through various community support and aid including fugitive/suspect apprehension, search and rescue, public event security, and the sharing of resources especially during emergency management. In the Spring of 2016, at the request of the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, Warden Goodwin activated DWCC’s Emergency Response Team due to critical flooding and severe pressure on local levees resulting from flood level rainfall. Staff utilized buses and support vehicles to transport equipment, offenders and staff to and from the levee staging areas where strategic response efforts were organized including filling, stacking, loading and placing sandbags on the levee around the clock. The collaborative efforts prevented levee breaches, and saved more than 50 homes and millions of dollars. Warden Goodwin’s direct involvement, guidance and assertiveness contributed greatly to this accomplishment.
The National Association of Wardens and Superintendents will present Warden Goodwin with the Warden of the Year award at the American Correctional Association’s Summer Conference in St. Louis, Missouri in August.