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Acting W.Va. jails chief chosen for permanent post


Contact: Lawrence Messina
(304) 558-2930

May 29, 2015

Acting W.Va. jails chief chosen for permanent post

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Interim regional jails Executive Director David Farmer has dropped the “acting” from his title after the West Virginia Regional Jail and Correctional Facility Authority (RJA) Board of Directors chose him as permanent chief, effective immediately.

Board members selected Farmer late Thursday, after interviewing several finalists as part of a search process that began with the departure of jails chief Joe DeLong.

“The board made the decision that was in the best interests of our correctional officers and the future of RJA,” said Board Chairman Gary Ellyson II. “We had three great candidates to interview. We feel we made the best decision.”

Farmer first joined RJA in February 2002 as director of Inmate Services at the South Central Regional Jail, in Kanawha County. He became administrator of the South Western Regional Jail, in Logan County, in December 2011. He was promoted to RJA deputy chief of operations and as director of its training academy in August 2014.

“I am honored and extremely grateful for this opportunity,” Farmer said. “I sincerely believe the employees of the Regional Jail Authority are some of the hardest working and most dedicated in the State of West Virginia and they deserve to have leadership that provides them with full and unwavering support. Further, I intend to ensure that the Regional Jail Authority operates at the highest level of efficiency, professionalism, honesty and integrity on behalf of the counties, the State and the inmate population that we serve.”

Farmer was named acting executive director on March 31. RJA is part of the Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety (DMAPS).

“David Farmer’s passion for the agency’s success is evident and he is well-respected by the agency’s workforce,” said Military Affairs and Public Safety Secretary Joe Thornton, a board member. “I am looking forward to working closely with him to ensure that RJA continues to deliver on its public safety mission.”

RJA has more than 1,140 correctional officers and other full-time employees and a $100 million annual budget, funded by per-day, per-inmate fees. There are currently about 4,300 inmates in the 10-jail system.

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