On May 7 the Colorado Department of Corrections Executive Team visited the Buena Vista Correctional Complex in Chaffee County.
One reason for their visit was to meet with the staff at BVCC in celebration of Corrections Professionals Appreciation Week, this year being observed from May 5-11. The other reason for their visit was to present one of the department’s most prestigious of awards.
DOC executive director Tom Clements served the state of Colorado from January 2011, until March 19, 2013, when he was tragically murdered at his home in Monument.
During Clements’ time as the head of the CDOC, he was committed to prison reforms, specifically providing offenders with the means and opportunities to walk away from their criminal pasts and become law-abiding, productive citizens, improving the overall safety of every person in the state of Colorado.
Beginning in May 2014, the DOC has selected an individual annually to receive the Tom Clements Memorial Award.
Every DOC facility and agency send their nominees, selected from approximately 6,000 corrections professionals to the DOC Recognition and Awards Committee to find the one staff who most abundantly and appropriately embodies and demonstrates the vision of recovery and reintegration in which Clements so strongly believed, and the department continues to strive for today.
For the first time since the awards inception, a Buena Vista Correctional Complex staff was selected. The 2019 Tom Clements Memorial Award winner is regional volunteer coordinator Rebecca Volz.
Volz joined the Colorado Department of Corrections in January 2000. During her years of service she has served in many capacities and at several state facilities.
Since coming to Buena Vista in 2016, she has been serving state facilities in Rifle, Delta and Cañon City as the Western Regional Volunteer Coordinator for DOC.
She is also the only facility volunteer coordinator at BVCC, a complex that houses over 1,200 offenders.
To give an idea of the amount of commitment and dedication Volz shows on a daily basis, here is an excerpt from her nomination form:
“The remote locations of BVCC, RCC, and DCC can often make in-reach services, speakers, and programs challenging. In addition, the small communities surrounding these facilities provide a much smaller pool of eligible and willing volunteers to support weekly programming to the offenders.
“Rebecca has not let these obstacles hinder efforts to provide these offenders with high-quality, informative, appropriate, and engaging opportunities to interact with a large group of diverse and knowledgeable citizens.
“Thanks to her tireless efforts, offender participation at BVCC is up, with 446 more individual offender participations so far this year than last.
“Rebecca understands that most volunteer programs do not occur 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and therefore can frequently be found at the facilities in the evening and weekend hours, providing the support, direction, and expertise needed to ensure that programs and events go off smoothly and safely… In short, Rebecca is exceeding all outlined expectations of her job assignment and classification.”
BVCC is honored to have one of their own recognized by the state and are very proud of Volz and her accomplishments.