The American University report that was presented to President Judge Thomas J. Doerr in March of 2002 made numerous recommendations in furtherance of the Butler County Criminal Justice Advisory Board creation and continued successful existence. Among these recommendations was for the Criminal Justice Advisory Board (CJAB) members to attend an annual Retreat at an off-site location where Strategic Plans can be created and complex issues discussed.
In the spirit of progress and with an open mind, members of the CJAB held our first Retreat at the Butler County Community College on Tuesday, April 29, 2003 at which time the exercise was facilitated by Dr. Arthur Amann and his associates from the Mercyhurst College Civic Institute. This Retreat resulted in the creation of the Vision and Mission Statements and the CJAB
Bylaws, which serve as the foundation of the CJAB today. Dr. Michael E Noyes, then Director of the Department of Community Corrections, was elected Chairman and Ms. Joyce Ainsworth, Director of Mental Health Services for Butler County, was elected Vice Chair, now referred to as Chair-Elect. In addition, job descriptions were established and discussions were held as to the creation of various committees designed to identify needs and effect solutions to various issues facing the criminal justice system.
Establishment of Formal Committees
The 2004 CJAB Retreat focused on the accomplishments of the previous year, the establishment of formal committees and the implementation of numerous other recommendations of the American University report, which is often referred to as the Trotter Report, in reference to Dr. Joseph A. Trotter and Dr. Alvin H. Cohn who lead the study. 2004 also ushered in another of the recommendations of the Trotter Report and one which was and continues to be supported by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, that being the creation of the position of CJAB Grant Writer/Criminal Justice Planner and the hiring of our CJAB's first full-time employee, Ms. Karen Boak-Wagner, to fill this position which was the result of a grant received from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency. Ms. Wagner's tenure with CJAB was brief and in February of 2005 Charles "Marty" Fleischer was hired to replace Ms. Wagner who accepted a position with VOICe.
On May 13,2005 the third CJAB Retreat was held and was again facilitated by Dr. Amann and his associates from the Mercyhurst College Civic Institute at which time various pertinent issues were discussed and a One Year Strategic Plan was developed. Progress made since the 2004 Retreat was acknowledged and new issues addressed.
Creation of a Three Year Strategic Plan
The May 12,2006 CJAB Retreat focused on the creation of a three year Strategic Plan which encompassed and included those recommendations of the Trotter Report, which had not been previously addressed and our CJAB is diligently working on implementing at this time.
The September 28, 2007 CJAB retreat focused on prison overcrowding, prisoner reentry programs, CJAB sustainability, CJAB/public interaction and the sequential intercept model. It was well attended and was facilitated by Mr. James Strader, Manager of the Office of Criminal Justice System Improvements at the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency and Ms. Bobby Juip, Western PA CJAB Specialist.
The 2008 CJAB Retreat took place on September 9th and was facilitated by Mr. James Strader, Deputy Director - Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency's Office of Criminal Justice System Improvements and Ms. Bobby Juip, PCCD Western Criminal Justice System Advisory Board Specialist.
Mr. Strader provided an update on what is new at PCCD and those in attendance discussed the progress that has been made to date with our 3 year Strategic Plan. The attendees also discussed certain recommendations proposed by the Trotter/Cohn Report and the status thereof, reviewed the numerous accomplishments of the CJAB and reviewed the organizations Vision and Mission Statements.