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Ashley Koonce, Executive Director • 936-344-1377
2025 Annual Training Conference • May 2025 • Atlanta, GA

Association of Paroling Authorities International

The recognized voice for the highest professional standards of responsible parole practices.

APAI Awards

Awards Information

The field of parole is both complex and demanding. Those of us who work in the field often do our work in a quiet and unassuming way. Naming an award for a member is the highest honor we can give, signifying that the person's contributions to the field have been exemplary.

Dr. Kenneth Walker Community Service Award
Dr. Kenneth Walker served as a “hands on” Chair and Member of the Rhode Island Parole Board for over 35 years, having been consistently reappointed by all Rhode Island Governors irrespective of their political affiliation. He was also an educator, basketball referee, and devoted his career to serving his home state of Rhode Island. Dr. Walker’s commitment to public service was unprecedented. Though retired, he continued to participate and advocate for his community particularly as it relates to young people, the incarcerated, senior citizens, the physically and mentally challenged, as well as issues related to the minority communities and their access to health care. He has been recognized and honored by many groups, including the Association of Paroling Authorities International, where he was awarded the Vincent O’Leary Award for his many contributions to the field of parole and the Ben Bear Award for his efforts to defend the parole supervision process as a necessary link in providing successful transition and reentry. Dr. Walker received the Neil J. Houston, Junior Award from Justice Assistance for his dedicated service and citizen contribution toward the Criminal Justice Profession and the Public Interest. This award, which is given in his name, is to recognize and reward an individual or an organization, which has contributed significantly to the furthering of the rehabilitative efforts of parole.

2023 Reaching Out From Within Kansas
2022 Amity Foundation California
2021 Our Roadway to Freedom Texas
2020 TRICOR Tennessee
2019 Marian House Maryland
2018 Hope for Prisoners Nevada
2017 Tsow-Tun Le Lum Society Canada
2016 Noah Outreach Program Florida
2015 Kindway Embark Ohio
2014 Open Door Youth Gang Alt Colorado
2013 Bridgemark Addiction Recovery Service Rhode Island
2012 Regina B. Shearn, Ph.D. Florida
2011 Grace House, Inc Texas
2010 Old Savannah City Mission Georgia
2009 Spectrum Health Systems, Inc Massachuetts
2008 R.S.V.P. (Reducing Serious Violence Partnership Program) Kentucky
2007 SAFER Foundation Illinois
2006 Salvation Nevada
2005 Reno Maryland Crime Victims Center Maryland
2004 Angela Patrick Georgia
2003 Gene Morgan Missouri
2002 LDS Prison Volunteers Utah
2001 Gayle Hebron Washington DC
2000 Harry Nigh, Evan Heise & Hugh Kirkegaard Canada
1999 Joe Elliott Mississippi
1998 Salvation Army Idaho
1997 Marge Marlette Nebraska
1996 Tri-County Advisory Board Missouri
1993 Robert Ganai New York

Renee Collette International Excellence Award
The Awards Committee also unanimously agreed that an award honoring our international colleagues be created to honor the incredible efforts and works of Renee Collette.

Renee Collette served as a member of the Quebec Parole Board for three years and as Chairman for ten years before being appointed as a full-time Board Member and Executive Vice-Chairperson for the Parole Board of Canada. Renee also served as the Acting Executive Director and Acting Chairperson for the Board during her tenure. Her commitment to International Criminal Justice existed throughout her career and reached far beyond the borders of North America. Renee served APAI from its earliest days, in every elected and appointed position that the Association of Paroling Authorities International Constitution embodies. Renee’s leadership fostered international growth and advancement throughout the years. Her representation and promotion of the international criminal justice community successfully helped form APAI into the strong international association that it is today. Renee holds numerous awards and recognitions, including the Vincent O’Leary Award, Ben Bear Award, and the President’s Award with the Association of Paroling Authorities International, the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Commemorative Medal, and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal of recognition.

This award, which is given in her name, is to recognize and reward an international individual or an organization, which has contributed significantly to the advancement of international criminal justice.

2023 Jennifer Shaffer California
2022 Alistair Spierling New Zealand
2021 Sylvie Blanchet Canada
2020 Jennifer Oades Canada

CARE Award
The CARE (Communication Award Recognizing Excellence in Education and Collaboration) Award encourages the use of best practices in the area of public and stakeholder education by yearly bestowing an award to recognize excellence in this area. The award process shall be used to create a resource for the sharing of examples of such practices within the membership. All nominations and the program or event descriptions contained in them shall be maintained and made available to APAI members through whatever means practical as a resource for other members.

The Public Relations/Communications Committee shall make the awards selection. Any committee member who is employed by an agency receiving a nomination shall recuse himself from the process. In the event that one-half or more of the committee members recuse themselves under this provision, the Regional Vice President representing the region(s) of the recused member(s) shall be asked to designate a proxy for the sole purpose of selecting the award recipient.

2023 Parole Board of Canada Canada
2020 Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board  
2019 Martin Jones The Parole Board of England and Wales
2018 Nevada Board of Parole Commissioners Nevada
2016 Florida Commission on Offender Review Florida
2015 New Zealand Parole Board New Zealand

Vincent O' Leary Award
This award is to recognize and reward an individual who has made significant contributions to APAI and has demonstrated vision, leadership and commitment to the field of parole. From 1951 to 1957, Vincent O‘Leary was Chief of Parole and Probation for the State of Washington. He then served in Texas as Director of Parole Supervision from 1957 until 1962. He became Director of the National Parole Institute in 1963, at which time he assumed responsibility for the first parole board member training, helped develop the first national statistic report on parole, and influenced the development of parole guidelines. He stayed in this position until 1968 and was also Director of Research and Policy for the National Council on Crime and Delinquency. During this time, he was instrumental in developing policy for parole boards in the early days of APAI. In 1968 he was employed as Dean of the School of Criminal Justice for the State University of New York at Albany. He was involved in developing standards for parole boards as a consultant to the National Advisory Commission on Criminal Justice Standards and Goals in 1973. In 1977 he was named President of the New York University at Albany and stayed until he retired in 1990. The hallmark of his career was his tireless fight against the abolishment of parole.

2023 Mark Keating Kansas
2022 Jennifer Shaffer California
2021 Francis Abbott Louisiana
2020 David Blumberg Maryland
2019 Jonathan Ogletree Kansas
2018 Ed Rhine Minnesota
2017 Harvey Cenaiko Canada
2016 Danielle LaCost Wisconsin
2015 Matthew Degnan Rhode Island
2014 Tena Pate Florida
2013 Jeralita “Jeri” Costa Washington
2012 Charles Traughber Tennessee
2011 Frederick S. S. Chilukutu Zambia
2010 Cynthia Mausser Ohio
2009 Jeffrey Peterson Minnesota
2008 Cathrine McVey Pennsylvania
2007 Marilyn Scafe Kansas
2006 Olivia Craven Idaho
2005 Jim Vick U.S. Army
2004 Ken Walker Rhode Island
2003 Renée Collette Canada
2002 Ken Sandhu Canada
2001 Marlene Lichtenstadter Delaware
2000 Willie Gibbs Canada
1999 George Keiser Washington DC
1998 Cranston Mitchell Missouri
1997 Peggy Burke Maryland
1996 Kermit Humphries Washington DC
1995 Raul Russi New York
1994 Gail Hughes Missouri
1993 Jeffrey Peterson Minnesota
1992 Kermit Humphries Washington DC

Ben Baer Award
This award recognizes and rewards an individual who has demonstrated significant service in the field of parole or community corrections. Benjamin F. Baer was an appointed public official who dedicated his 48-year career to the criminal justice system, fighting for fair and equitable treatment of offenders and protection of the public. He was appointed to the U.S. Parole Commission by President Ronald Reagan in January 1982, was designated Acting Chairman in February and appointed as Chairman on March 24, 1982. He served in that position until his death in April 9, 1991. Chairman Baer was known best for his determination and struggle to defend just punishment for offenders. He was a dedicated advocate for truth and fairness in sentencing, and he fought tireless battles to defend the supervision process as a necessary link in providing safety, accountability, and protection to the public.

2023 Julie Micek Nebraska
2022 Edmund "Fred" Hyun Hawaii
2021 Martin Jones England
2020 Lee VanHoose Kentucky
2019 Richard Stoker South Carolina
2018 Lonzo Henderson Alaska
2017 Renee Collette Canada
2016 Patricia Cushwa Washington DC
2015 David Blumberg Maryland
2014 Jeffrey Peterson Minnesota
2013 Dr. Kenneth Walker Rhode Island
2012 Judge Sir David Carruthers New Zealand
2011 James E. Vick U.S. Army
2010 James D. Johnston U.S. Air Force
2009 Garland R. Hunt Georgia
2008 Lisa S. Holley Rhode Island
2007 Cranston Mitchell Maryland
2006 Judge Cameron Batjier Nevada
2005 Gerald Garrett Texas
2004 Ed Reilly Washington DC
2003 Michael Sibbett Utah
2002 Larry Solomon Washington DC
2001 Vicki Meyers Missouri
2000 Jasper Clay Maryland
1999 Charles Traughber Tennessee
1998 Pete Haun Utah
1996 John Sicoli Missouri

President's Award
This award is given to an individual or organization that has made at least a single significant contribution either to the field of parole or to the Association.

2023 Carleton Giles Connecticut
2022 Jonathan Ogletree Kansas
2021 Jennifer Shaffer California
2020 Christine Burke Maryland
2019 Monica Morris Florida
2018 Jeffrey Peterson Minnesota
2017 Thando Tsetsewa South Africa
2016 Keith Hardison Kentucky
2015 Dr. Ralph Serin Canada
2014 Peggy Burke Maryland
2013 Renée Collette Canada
2012 Kermit Humphries NIC
2011 Jeralita “Jeri” Costa Washington
2010 Jean Sutton Canada
2010 Georgia Host Committee Georgia
2009 Rissie Owens Texas
2008 Garland Hunt Georgia
2008 Jeffrey Peterson Minnesota
2008 Elizabeth Robinson Iowa
2008 Charles Traughber Tennessee
2008 Karen White Iowa
2007 JEFT Foundation New York
2006 Francis Nelson Australia
2006 BI, Inc Colorado
2005 Norm Gottlieb U.S. Army
2005 Richard Stroker South Carolina
2005 Paul Herman Missouri
2004 Olivia Craven Idaho
2004 William Pfeifer Delaware
2002 Margarette Ghee Ohio
2002 Patricia Cushwa Maryland

2024 Annual Training Conference Exhibitors