MADISON — Dane County has hired Jerome Dillard to serve as its new Jail Re-entry Coordinator, Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced May 5.
Parisi included the creation of the new position, located in the county’s Department of Human Services, in his 2014 budget to better connect individuals transitioning from the criminal justice system back into the community with services to help them succeed in the community.
“Jerome has a proven record of building on the strengths of individuals, families, and the community to affect positive change in people’s lives,” said Parisi. “His work will help us to achieve important goals for the county – reducing recidivism in our criminal justice system and addressing racial disparities – that will ultimately strengthen our communities.”
The increased support is intended to help an individual get their life back on track and prevent a return to the criminal justice system by helping them access stable housing, employment, mental health services, and more.
The Re-entry Coordinator will also work collaboratively with internal and external services in order to advocate for an individual’s needs and to assure delivery of those services.
Dillard has an extensive history working with individuals to access re-entry program services, most recently as Human Services Program Coordinator for the Wisconsin Department of Health Service (WI. Resource Center) a Mental Health and AODA treatment prison. Dillard also served as the Resource Specialist at MADISON area URBAN MINISTRY, Chair of Voices Beyond Bars, and the Director of Re-entry and Advocacy Services for Nehemiah.
“This is a tremendous opportunity to work with this population in Dane County. After doing this work for more than a decade, it is certain that incarceration cannot be the response to every social issue we have,” said Dillard.
Dillard was awarded the 2008 Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award for his work in re-entry. He also serves on the State of Wisconsin Council on Offender Re-entry Committee and TAD (Treatment Alternative and Diversion) Advisory and Selection Committee.
“Jerome is passionate about the efforts of re-entry, rehabilitation and recommitment to Dane County. He has and will continue to address the arena of incarceration by implementing programming that reaches and responds to the hierarchy of residence, employment, support, treatment and transportation,” said Supervisor Sheila Stubbs. “I look forward to Jerome's creative efforts that will continue to reduce incarceration rates in Dane County.”
Dillard began his work as Jail Re-Entry Coordinator on Monday, May 5th.