Mayor Greg Fischer announced on Friday that Dwayne Clark would serve as the new director of Metro Corrections. Clark replaces Mark Bolton who has served in the position since 2008.
“To call him a veteran corrections official would be an understatement,” Fischer said of Clark. “He brings years and years and a lifetime of experience to this important position. He’s a dedicated corrections professional with heart as big as this city.”
Clark previously served as the chief of staff under Bolton from 2009 until his retirement in February. Clark first joined Metro Corrections in 2004 as deputy director and will rejoin the department and begin his new role as director on Aug. 1.
“I am honored to return to Louisville Metro government working for Mayor Fisher’s team and serving the Louisville Metro Community,” Clark said. “LMDC has set the bar for their work in areas of offender services and programs such as detox, mental health and reintegrating offenders back into the community better than they were.”
During his tenure as Metro Corrections chief of staff, Clark was responsible for jail security and operations and helped Bolton’s leadership team earn accreditations from the American Corrections Association and National Commission on Correctional Health Care.
“I will work with Metro Corrections staff to maintain the national accreditation and offender services and programs at the same level or higher and continue to look for ways to utilize best practices and to move the Metro Corrections forward,” Clark said.
Clark is an Illinois native and studied criminal justice at John A. Logan College in Carterville, Illinois.
“You have to be a top notch professional in terms of being able to run a jail, but you have to be a top notch human being as well in terms of knowing how to work with people,” Fischer said. “So I’m really confident that Dwayne Clark is the right person to lead this team and do this incredibly important work.”
Bolton announced his retirement in May, and Eric Troutman was named acting director on June 3.
In recent years jail overcrowding has been a major problem, both in Louisville and in the rest of the state. On WFPL’s In Conversation earlier this month, Bolton said the opioid epidemic turned his jail into a de facto detox facility. He said the state must implement changes if leaders want to address its rising jail population.
“Kentucky, I think, is primed for criminal justice reform. We are not going to build our way out of this,” Bolton said referring to building more jails. “What we’ve been doing here in this country for the last 200 years needs to change, and there’s certainly better ways to do it.”