AK DOC Today

News, Events, and Activities in the Alaska Department of Corrections

‘God Behind Bars’ Comes to Spring Creek

God Behind Bars at SCCC

Pictured: Phil Rees (God Behind Bars), Asst. Supt. Bobby Lockeby, SCCC Chaplain David Arestad and Pastor Scott Smith (God Behind Bars and Victory Bible Camp)

The God Behind Bars program has started at the Spring Creek Correctional Center. The program recently donated a projector, a computer, a screen and a sound system to facilitate playing DVDs of their services for the prisoners at SCCC.

Spring Creek Pie-Toss Raises Funds for SHARE

SCCC Pie Toss for SHARE 2013

SCCC Pie Toss for SHARE 2013

Sgt. Brian Morris takes a good-natured pie in the face from Food Service Lead Trip Labrake

On Wednesday October 30, Spring Creek Correctional Center held a pie-throwing event to benefit the 2013 Alaska Share campaign. The brave volunteers were Assistant Superintendent Bob Lockeby, Lieutenant Erich Torrey, Administrative Officer I Sherie Fryxell, Sgt. Justin Ennis, Sgt. Brian Morris, and Accounting Clerk Autumn Dell. Together with a silent auction, Spring Creek employees donated over $700.00 to a variety of charities and nonprofit organizations. Spring Creek thanks everyone who participated in the silent auction and pie-throwing event, either through donating goods or bidding on items.

— Dean Marshall

Officer Ceciliani Retires From SCCC After 29 Years


Correctional Officer II Cathie Ceciliani retired from Spring Creek Correctional Center on May 31, 2013, after 29 years of exemplary state service. Officer Ceciliani began her career with the Department of Transportation in 1984, where she oversaw the construction of the Spring Creek Correctional Center. Cathie began working at Spring Creek since 1988, and she retired as the facility’s highest seniority Correctional Officer. Officer Ceciliani provided Spring Creek with outstanding service over the years, and we wish her continued success and happiness in her retirement.

— Dean Marshall

Spring Creek Converts Unused Property Room to Vocational Training Area

Spring Creek Correctional Center’s old property room received a face lift and has become an extended vocational opportunity to the inmates, says Education CJP Gary Olsen. The goal was to offer a construction training center for inmates at SCCC. With the help of PCC Educational Coordinator Paul Kroenung and a small crew that were working in a Carpentry Apprenticeship program, work began. The area was transformed, a few books have been added and some tools have been pulled together. The project is nearing completion and expected to be up and running in a few more months. Inmates must complete the Core Curriculum first and will then have an opportunity to participate in a National Center for Construction Education and Research or (NCCER) certified program either in carpentry, electrical or plumbing. NCCER is a not-for-profit education foundation that developed standardized construction and maintenance curricula and assessments with portable credentials. According to CJP Olsen, the construction field is one field that has fewer felony barriers for the inmate to overcome.

Correctional Officer Marolf named SCCC Employee of the Year


From left: Superintendent Dean Marshall, Director Bryan Brandenburg, Deputy Commissioner Leslie Houston, Employee of the Year Fred Marolf, Deputy Commissioner Ron Taylor and Commissioner Joe Schmidt

Correctional Officer II Fred Marolf was honored as Spring Creek Correctional Center’s 2013 Employee of the Year. Officer Marolf began his career with the Department in April, 2005. He has served as a Field Training Officer and a TAC Team Leader at SCCC. A no-host luncheon was at the Peking Restaurant, in Seward.

Officer Marolf has successfully mentored numerous new hires at SCCC and has trained many highly effective and productive officers. Marolf’s attention to detail has proven to be a vital asset in his training approach. From his early days as a CO Marolf earned the reputation of being a highly skilled “shakedown artist.” “If you needed something found or something was suspected being in a cell, you sent Fred to find it and he usually did,” said Assistant Superintendent Bobby Lockeby. Marolf has been an active member of the tac-team for many years and can be counted on to be there when issues needed to be resolved. “Marolf has earned the respect of not only his peers but from prisoners as well. Fred’s sense of humor, although rather dry, lightens and lifts those around him,” Lockeby added “He holds the line on the departments’ mission of maintaining a firm, fair and consistent approach in dealing with prisoners.” Officer Marolf is married and has two children and is a grandparent.

PO Sullivan Receives Statewide Honors from American Legion

PO Clare Sullivan

Spring Creek Correctional Center’s PO II Clare Sullivan has been appointed Historian for the American Legion Department of Alaska and has also been honored with the Commander of the Year Award. The American Legion in Alaska represents over 100,000 veterans in the state and addresses issues that pertain to veterans educational and medical benefits and compensation for injuries sustained during military service. The American Legion in Alaska has 33 active posts in addition to outlying posts in Guam and Taiwan. Clare’s responsibilities as Historian include preserving and compiling the records of the American Legion Department of Alaska and its activities, ensuring an accurate documentation of events and preserving this information for future use and historical reference. Clare has worked for the Department of Corrections for just over 15 years and has been a correctional officer, institutional security and compliance sergeant, and now is serving as a probation officer.

Spring Creek Celebrates Sgt. Bruning Retirement

After close to 17 years of dedicated service, Correctional Officer III Barry Bruning will retire from the State of Alaska Department of Corrections on May 1. An informal get-together was held April 26th at the American Legion in Seward; photos from that event are included here.
Sergeant Bruning began his Career as a Correctional Officer I at the Spring Creek Correctional Center in 1996. He was promoted to Sergeant in 2000 and has provided exemplary service in the positions of House Supervisor, Shift Supervisor, Disciplinary Sergeant, Compliance/Standards Sergeant and Security Sergeant. “He has been a fabulous part of our organization and will be greatly missed,” said a coworker. “He’s a good guy who has been a wonderful asset to our profession.”

— Supt. Dean Marshall

SCCC Inmate Class Expands Crocheting Skills

SCCC Crocheting

I’m an Education Coordinator at Spring Creek and a knitter who’s recently discovered a passion for knitting lace. Knitting at lunch was fun but time flew by and it was over much too fast. So what started as an enterprise in my own criminal thinking – how can I get away with knitting at work – turned into something entirely different – a daily crochet class for General Population prisoners and conversation about children, respect, food, family, music and more. And like broccoli hidden in the macaroni and cheese, crochet time is also a lesson in anger management and impulse control, in goal setting and delayed gratification, in cross cultural communication and social skills. It’s a quietly subversive time with amazing and wonderful results. Hats, scarves, booties and blankets are made and creative muscles flexed as prisoners adapt patterns to their own designs. Correctional Officers do double takes as they walk by the classroom. Everyone knows someone who knows how to crochet, especially in the prisoner population where so many learned how in juvenile detention. And me, the knitter who discovered lace? Now I’m a crocheter too, grateful for the time and space we’ve created and constantly surprised by what happens.

— Nonna Shtipelman, Educational Coordinator, Spring Creek Correctional Center

Celebration Lunch set for Retiring Superintendent Craig Turnbull

Craig Turnbull

A celebration luncheon for retiring Spring Creek Correctional Center Superintendent Craig Turnbull is scheduled for 11 am Thursday, Feb. 28th at Spring Creek. Everyone is welcome to attend and is invited to share memories and wish him well.

Craig began his career with the Alaska Department of Corrections on April 15, 1991 as a Correctional Officer I at Spring Creek Correctional Center (SCCC). Craig was promoted to Correctional Officer III on February 1, 1995 and selected as the SCCC Employee of the Year in 1997. He served as Shift Supervisor for both A and B Shifts throughout his time as Sergeant and was promoted to Assistant Superintendent on January 7, 2000. Craig was promoted to Superintendent on November 23, 2001.

As evidence of his strong support for programming, Craig was instrumental in bringing the Youthful Offender Program (YOP) to Spring Creek in 1991. This partnership between the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District and the Department of Corrections served over 400 inmates, of which almost 170 earned high school diplomas and 20
GEDs. Now at Anchorage Jail, the YOP continues to build on the success gained at Spring Creek. Craig’s support for programming allows Education staff to do their jobs despite the many obstacles so often encountered in a prison setting. Craig’s support and strong belief that programming matters will be sorely missed.

Throughout his career at Spring Creek, Craig maintained a strong connection with the community of Seward. Leading by example, he encouraged staff and prisoner clubs alike to donate to and support through volunteer efforts the American Legion, Boy Scouts, Seward Fire Department, Seward Salmon Derby, Seward Mount Haven Elder Center, Seward Marathon Wrestling, Toys for Tots, and the Polar Bear Jump fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, amongst others.

Craig’s optimistic outlook and “can do” attitude are positive influences to all around him. His encouragement of good communication fosters an atmosphere of teamwork and respect across all Shifts and among Security and Support Staff as well. In a profession where your heart has no business being displayed upon your sleeve, Craig’s genuine care and support for staff, both in and out of uniform, is always evident. Making decisions for the “good of the order” takes a depth of understanding, an ability to weigh all options, and the strength of character to stand-up for the best – though not always easiest – solution. Craig’s heart, grounded in experience and knowledge, guided SCCC through many difficult decisions and we wish him well. We’ll miss you, Craig!

— Asst. Superintendent Bobby Lockeby