(Posted May 9, 2022)
As part of the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction’s Employee Recognition Week, held May 2-6, London Correctional Institution recognized several staff members for their service.
Corrections Officer of the Year
Brandon Miller began his career in corrections in 2017 as a corrections officer. He has completed crisis intervention team training, served as a cadet on the special response team, serves as a mentor and coach to new staff, and has represented LoCI at career days at local high schools. He holds an associate of arts degree in criminal justice.
In 2020, Miller was one of the first responders to the scene of a fire that occurred when an inmate altered an electronic tablet. He assisted in evacuating the inmates, then helped other staff in trying to extinguish the fire. He suffered from smoke inhalation and had to go to the emergency room.
In 2021, Miller was tasked with developing a plan to clean the open area of the facility because birds were coming into the institution and creating a health hazard. He recommended that screens be placed over windows, the open area be filled in, and an inmate cleaning crew be formed. The plan has drastically reduced the number of birds making their way into the institution.
Due to his interpersonal skills, Miller is adept at deescalating situations and is used to “tag in” when other officers are having issues with inmates.
Employee of the Year
Gregory Miller began his career with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections in 2013 as a corrections officer. He was promoted to correctional counselor/sergeant in 2021.
Miller has been a hostage negotiator the past three years and LoCI’s chief negotiator for one year. He is a member of the crisis intervention team, the vulnerability committee and the critical incident management design committee. He is certified in correctional behavioral health and instructs behavioral intervention classes.
Miller has been named corrections officer of the month twice and employee of the month once due to the major contraband he found and the impact his presence makes in the dormitories.
In 2020 and 2021, Miller assisted with COVID relief at Ohio State University/Franklin Medical Center, Trumbull Correctional Institution, and Madison Correctional Institution. He assisted in COVID screenings for offenders, transported laboratory specimens for testing, and performed security functions for the prisons.
Miller’s diligence inside the prison walls has resulted in two felony convictions, one for possession of heroin and the other for a serious assault against a staff member.
Supervisor of the Year
James Reeves began his career in corrections in 2011 as a corrections officer. He was promoted to lieutenant in 2019. He chairs the rules infraction board, a two-person panel that determines the guilt or innocence of an offender who violates institutional rules.
Reeves has been a member of LoCI’s special response team since 2013 and is the assistant commander. He is a behavioral intervention use of force instructor and has completed critical incident training (CIT). He serves as a coach to new staff and is a mentor to another corrections officer. He has served as an instructor, teaching critical incident management, health and safety, and active aggressor classes.
Reeves has been named corrections officer of the month twice and supervisor of the month twice. He was recognized once because an offender was non-compliant. He used his CIT skills to deescalate the situation and prevent use of force. As an officer, he responded to an offender who had committed suicide. He administered CPR; the offender eventually passed away. Reeves said the event was very eye opening as an officer.
Kenny Wilder Award
Vickey Justus, acting deputy warden of special services, received the Kenny Wilder Award. The award is named for a former LoCI employee who passed away in 1996 at age 36 as the result of a heart attack. Wilder was revered by staff and inmates alike.
The award recognizes employees who give of themselves willingly to others through their work and their community involvement. The warden selects the winner.
Justus has worked at LoCI for 42 years. Prior to the position she holds now, she served as operations compliance manager, labor relations officer, and correctional warden’s assistant. She is a member of Mechanicsburg Christian Fellowship and formerly served as a 4-H advisor and as a member of the Mechanicsburg village council.
“I knew Kenny. I have a picture of him in my office. It is an honor to receive this award,” Justus said.