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Jewell to be first Black woman to serve as House of Correction superintendent

Chantell Jewell

Chantell Jewell

Chantell Jewell is set to be the first Black woman to serve as a superintendent of the Milwaukee House of Correction.

Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley announced Jewell as his appointee on Monday. Her tenure will begin on Nov. 16, pending approval from the Milwaukee County Board. She would replace Michael Hafemann, who resigned earlier this year.

Jewell is a Milwaukee native with nearly three decades of experience within corrections. For the past year, she’s served as a deputy administrator for Milwaukee County’s Division of Youth and Family Services.

Prior to joining Milwaukee County, Jewell worked as a Reentry Services Manager for EMPLOY Milwaukee and the Wisconsin Department of Corrections. At EMPLOY Milwaukee, she developed the organization’s long-term policy agenda of reentry programming, increased employment opportunities and placements for people in the system in Milwaukee County, and led systems integration between the Workforce Board, Department of Corrections and community based organizations.

Jewell worked for the Wisconsin Department of Corrections for 20 years, serving as a youth counselor, parole agent and field supervisor. She also co-chaired the DOC’s Regional Diversity Committee to improve organizational culture, educate staff on implicit bias and review hiring practices to increase staff diversity.

She also served on statewide committees that developed evidence-based responses to violations in the correctional system and developed policy for sex offenders experiencing homelessness.

In a statement, Jewell said she’s committed her life to improving the lives of others and helping people involved with the justice system have a positive impact on the community around them. The HOC plays a big role in Milwaukee County’s goal to achieve racial equity and become the state’s healthiest county, Jewell said, and she looks forward to being part of the solution.

Crowley also said the future of the HOC is integral to Milwaukee County achieving racial equity and improving health outcomes. He said Jewell’s experience serving Milwaukee County residents, and her leadership in promoting racial equity, addressing disparities, reducing incarceration and promoting improved outcomes for residents make her “uniquely qualified” to lead the HOC.

Upon approval, nearly two-thirds of Crowley’s department leaders will be Black and more than half of department heads will be women.

About Michaela Paukner, mpaukner@wislawjournal.com

Michaela Paukner is the legal reporter for the Wisconsin Law Journal. She can be reached at (414) 225-1825 or by email at mpaukner@wislawjournal.com.

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