East Lansing woman named to helm Dept of Corrections


LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Governor Rick Snyder has named Heidi Washington of East Lansing to be the next director of the Michigan Department of Corrections. Washington is a veteran of the state corrections system and will replace Dan Heyns, who is moving into a position as an advisor to the governor on reforming the statewide criminal justice system.

Washington has been with the Michigan Department of Corrections for 17 years, most recently serving as warden at the Charles Egeler Reception and Guidance Center in Jackson. Governor Snyder praised Washington’s management style and her commitment to working with the offenders at the facility. “Her time spent within the prison administration and on the legislative side will bring great value to this time of transformation in identifying the policies to be changed and how those reforms will improve public safety,” said Gov. Snyder. “Changing the outcomes of our corrections system remains a challenge but continues to be priority of mine, and I’m confident that Heidi will take ownership of these reforms and see them through.”

Washington also has experience as a legislative liaison for the Department of Corrections and as a legislative staffer. She has a law degree from Cooley Law School, is a graduate of Michigan State and Lansing Community College.

If the appointment is approved by the state Senate, Washington will begin to transition into the Director position June 30. Heyns, the former Jackson County sheriff, will assist Washington as she moves into the director role.

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