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Secretary's Messages


  • Sergeant William Joseph Durden passed away on Thursday, July 7th, 2016. Sergeant Durden served in the United States Navy prior to joining the Department of Juvenile Justice at St. Lucie Regional Juvenile Detention Center in 1986, then the Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services.
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  • Last Wednesday, I had the honor and privilege to join Governor Rick Scott for a bill signing ceremony at the Florida Association of Counties (FAC) Annual Conference in Orlando.
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  • Over Memorial Day, GOC II Tiffany Baylor from the Bureau of Contract Management attended the 22nd Annual National Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) event in Washington, D.C.
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  • Last week, the winners of the 2016 Prudential Productivity Awards were announced during a ceremony at the Donald L. Tucker Center in Tallahassee.
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  • I am deeply saddened by the horrific terrorist event which took place over the weekend in Orlando. It is my hope that each of you will keep the victims, their families, those touched by this tragedy, and the community of Orlando in your thoughts during this time of grief and recovery.
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  • It is my great pleasure to recognize Senior Juvenile Probation Officer Robert Scott as our DJJ Employee of the Month!
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  • Last week, I attended the Florida Network of Youth and Family Services Annual Meeting in Orlando where it was my honor to give remarks to the attendees as well as host a Q&A session.
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  • Last Monday, Deputy Secretary Tim Niermann and I traveled to Pinellas County to meet with local law enforcement and probation staff.
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  • On Friday, Deputy Secretary Tim Niermann and Assistant Secretary for Probation Paul Hatcher met with Juvenile Probation Officer (JPO) Class 67 at the Florida Public Safety Institute.
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  • On Wednesday, I traveled to Sarasota for the Florida Children and Youth Cabinet Quarterly meeting at the State College of Florida Lakewood Ranch.
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  • Last week I was in our nation’s capital to take part in the Juvenile Justice Leadership Network’s biannual meeting at Georgetown University.
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  • Last week marked the 21st Annual Adolescent Conference presented by the Florida Juvenile Justice Association April 20-21 at the Rosen Centre in Orlando.
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  • Last Monday, DJJ held an employee recognition ceremony at Headquarters to honor 21 employees who were celebrating their anniversary of service to the state of Florida.
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  • Last week, our Executive Leadership Team was proud to welcome a delegation from the Delaware Department of Services for Children, Youth and Their Families.
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  • Last Tuesday, I had the great privilege to be recognized during the 10th Annual Women in History Celebration, hosted by the Florida Public Safety Institute in Midway. The theme for this year’s celebration was centered on honoring women in public service and government.
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  • On Monday, Human Trafficking Director Bethany Gilot and I attended the Statewide Council on Human Trafficking meeting in Tampa. During the meeting, I provided an update on DJJ’s statewide Human Trafficking Screening Tool implemented in our intake centers and juvenile detention facilities.
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  • On Friday, Deputy Secretary Tim Niermann and I met with JPO Class 66 at the Florida Public Safety Institute. It was great to speak with them and share the vision of the Department along with our reform efforts.
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  • Last week, I was excited to welcome our detention superintendents, detention regional directors, and detention trainers to the statewide detention training at the Pat Thomas Law Enforcement Academy.
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  • On March 1st, DJJ teamed up with legislators, local non-profits, agencies, Capitol staff, and other partners to donate gently-worn professional attire during the #SuitsforSession campaign in conjunction with Volunteer Florida and Uber. The collection of clothing was coordinated by Goodwill Industries of the Big Bend and the State Division of Blind Services.
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  • Congratulations to the Juvenile Justice Detention Officers (JDOs) and Juvenile Justice Probation Officers (JPOs) who graduated on February 26, 2016 at Valencia College, Criminal Justice Institute in Orlando, Florida.
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