Criminal Detention Facilities Review Committees

Monitoring Arkansas's criminal detention facilities to ensure the health and safety of inmates and staff

Meet the Coordinator

Sterling Penix began his service with the Criminal Detention Facilities Review Office in January 2015.

Get to Know Coordinator Penix

Sterling Penix began his service with the Criminal Detention Facilities Review Office in January of 2015. Coordinator Penix, a career public safety professional, launched his career in 1998 at the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office as a detention/jail officer. While a college student, he worked and volunteered at the University of Arkansas Police Department. He rejoined the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office as a detention/jail officer and later deputy sheriff. In time, he joined the Clarksville Police Department.

Coordinator Penix graduated from Southern Arkansas University with a master’s degree in Public Administration, the University of Arkansas with a bachelor’s degree in Education (Human Resource Development), Southern Arkansas University Tech with an associate’s degree in Law Enforcement, the Arkansas Law Enforcement Training Academy, and the Arkansas State University Paralegal Certificate Program. Coordinator Penix has completed a range of additional criminal justice and public safety trainings. Coordinator Penix served as an adjunct Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement instructor for Arkansas Tech University (Ozark Campus-Clarksville High School) and is a longtime volunteer with a range of community groups, county boards, professional organizations, as well as state and national associations.

A Message from the Coordinator

On behalf of the Criminal Detention Facilities Review Committees and the Review Office staff, I want to express that it is an honor to be appointed by Governor Asa Hutchinson and a privilege to serve Arkansas and our communities.

In recent years, the agency has launched a number of initiatives and efforts reflective of Governor Hutchinson’s goals of continuous improvement, innovative solutions, and focus on efficiency.

The Review Committees and staff work to be a positive partner and a reliable resource for each community and each agency. The agency’s core mission is to provide an annual review for each jail, adult detention facility, and juvenile detention facility based on current review standards. The agency also provides technical assistance and support services on a host of topics and projects. Arkansas is composed of eight Review Committees who serve respective geographic districts.

In recent times, the agency began hosting or co-hosting a number of new measures and projects to better serve Arkansas. Among new efforts are annual Jail Resource Day events, new federal, state, and local collaborations and premier trainings. The agency has also worked to better support local criminal justice coordinating committees, grant/resource procurement efforts and local reentry programs. We continue to improve stakeholder engagement and facilitate long-term community planning projects as well as assist with youth programming, peer partnerships and much more!

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