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An employee publication of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice
May/June 2014

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Fallen officers remembered

Crime Victims' Rights Week keynote speaker Judy Brumbelow
 

Floyd Hejl, father of fallen parole officer Reuben Hejl, stands at attention during the Posting of the Colors. Mr. Hejl’s son died of injuries sustained during a motorcycle accident on May 19, 2009 while performing his duties as a parole officer in Huntsville.

 

The 15th Annual Fallen Officers' Memorial Ceremony was held at the Texas Prison Museum on May 8 to honor the memory of officers and employees lost in the line of duty. This service, and similar ones held at units throughout the state, serves as a special time set aside to honor each fallen employee and reflect upon the impact each has had on their co-workers and family members.

Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) Executive Director Brad Livingston was the keynote speaker at the event held in Huntsville and spoke about those who have been lost, saying, "Today, as we honor those who have died in the line of duty, I urge you to remember their unselfishness, their many acts of courage and the commitment they demonstrated every day. It’s human nature to feel some sadness as we reflect back on those who laid down their lives, but they deserve more than our sorrow. They deserve our pride and our continued dedication to making the state of Texas a safer place."

Texas Board of Criminal Justice Chairman Oliver Bell was also in attendance at the ceremony, which was held during National Correctional Officer’s and Employee’s Week. Speaking of all TDCJ employees, Chairman Bell said, "The dedication TDCJ employees demonstrate while protecting their fellow employees and the citizens of Texas is an inspiration. I have nothing but the utmost respect for these folks who serve as the backbone of our agency and ensure we have the best criminal justice system in the nation."

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TDCJ employee retires from Air Force Reserve after 30 years service

In April, a retirement ceremony was held for Emil Garza at Lackland Air Force base in San Antonio. Garza served more than 30 years in active duty and reserve positions, ultimately attaining the rank of Command Chief Master Sergeant. In his civilian life, Garza is employed as assistant regional director of Region IV for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) Correctional Institutions Division (CID), and has been with the agency since 1994.

airforce retirement ceremony photo
 

Emil Garza (right) receives a Certificate of Retirement from Brigadier General Kenneth Lewis during an Air Force retirement ceremony held in April at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio. (Photo courtesy of Lackland Talespinner)

 

Garza began his military career in 1978 as a Security Forces Airman. He served active-duty from 1978 to 1982, and joined the Air Force Reserve’s 433rd Weapons Systems Security Flight, 433rd Military Airlift Wing in 1988 after a short break from military service. He served in many supervisory roles throughout his military career and was mobilized three times, including a tour of duty to Saudi Arabia in 2002. Garza’s service was recognized during his time in the military, and he received several military decorations, including the Air Force Meritorious Service Medal and the Air Force Commendation Medal.

In 1994, Garza began his career with TDCJ as a correctional officer at the McConnell Unit in Beeville. He has held several positions during his time with the agency, including chief administrator of the Security Threat Group Management Office. In 2013, he was named assistant regional director for CID Region IV.

Like many other TDCJ employees who have served in the armed forces, Garza's military experience has been an asset to his criminal justice career. He appreciates the opportunities that these two careers have provided, and commented on how his military service compliments his agency career, saying, "TDCJ and the military have given me the best of both worlds. I have been blessed to have had the opportunity to serve the State of Texas and this great nation. The professional, as well as the personal experiences in one job have benefited me in the other."

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TDCJ EMPLOYEE PROMOTIONS AND TRANSFERS
Name From To
Matt Barber Senior Warden,
Clyde M. Johnston SAFPF
Senior Warden,
Dolph Briscoe Unit/
Cotulla Transfer Facility
Jennifer Cozby Major of Correctional Officers,
Rufe Jordan Unit/Baten Transfer Facility
Assistant Warden,
Preston E. Smith Unit
Ronald Fox Senior Warden,
Clarence M. Stevenson Unit
Senior Warden,
French Robertson Unit
Keith Gentry Assistant Warden,
Formby State Jail/
J.B. Wheeler State Jail
Senior Warden,
Jim Rudd Transfer Facility
William Jones Assistant Warden,
Preston E. Smith Unit
Senior Warden,
Clyde M. Johnston SAFPF
Charles Hufford Major of Correctional Officers,
Marlin Transfer Facility
Assistant Warden,
Dalhart Unit
Darrell Nash Major of Correctional Officers,
Nathaniel J. Neal Unit
Assistant Warden,
Formby State Jail/
J.B. Wheeler State Jail
Jesus Manuel Peralta Senior Warden,
Dolph Briscoe Unit/
Cotulla Transfer Facility
Senior Warden,
John B. Connally Unit
Kendall Richerson Assistant Warden,
Dalhart Unit
Senior Warden,
Thomas Havins Unit
Jimmy Smith Senior Warden,
Jim Rudd Transfer Facility
Senior Warden,
Clarence M. Stevenson Unit
Steven Sperry Senior Warden,
Thomas Havins Unit
Senior Warden,
Charles T. Terrell Unit

 

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Service Awards

 

Click here to download the Service Awards listing.

 

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Retirees

 

Click here to download the Retirees listing.


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Fallen officers remembered

TDCJ employee retires from Air Force Reserve after 30 years service

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