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Success Stories

Chad Roettjer

Chad Roettjer graduated from SIU in 1994 and just celebrated his 20th anniversary with the Phoenix Police. He writes, "Thank you SIU for making it all happen!"

Chad Roettjer
Police Officer
Phoenix, Arizona


Calvin Brown

Calvin BrownThe Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police (ILACP) recently named their 2015 “Rising Shields of Law Enforcement” recipients. The recipient in the state agency category is Illinois State Police Master Sergeant (M/Sgt.) Calvin Brown.

The “Rising Shields of Law Enforcement” represents the brightest, young, up-and-coming leaders in law enforcement. Recipients are nominated by their agency and then rated by the ILACP based on leadership attributes, law enforcement initiatives, personal beliefs in the value of law enforcement, and peer recognition and engagement. In order to be considered for the award nominees must be under the age of 45 and below the rank of Deputy Chief or Lieutenant. The award serves to educate the public about the many contributions of sworn officers and others who work in law enforcement.

“M/Sgt. Brown’s leadership skills and mentoring abilities have been instrumental in the investigative efforts of his work unit,” stated Major Chris Trame. “He continues to set the example when it comes to leading crime fighting efforts in the Metro East,” Trame continued.

M/Sgt. Brown has 18 years of law enforcement experience and has been with Illinois State Police since 2001. As an investigator with the ISP, M/Sgt. Brown has been assigned to the gangs unit, the violent crimes unit, and he has served as an intelligence officer. Prior to 2001 M/Sgt. Brown was a deputy with the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department.

M/Sgt. Brown is currently assigned as the squad supervisor for the Metro East Police Assistance Team (MEPAT). The MEPAT provides criminal investigative efforts and offers intelligence based support to local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies.

Master Sergeant Calvin Brown
Illinois State Police
SIU Alumnus 1996


Jason R. Ingram

Jason IngramJason Ingram is an assistant professor in the Department of Criminal Justice Sciences at Illinois State University, as well as the graduate coordinator for the master's program there.

Dr. Ingram received both his bachelor's and master's degrees at SIU Carbondale before pursuing his Ph.D. at Michigan State.

His primary focus of research centers on "police culture, use of force, and supervision," as well as digital piracy. Dr. Ingram's personal webpage also describes his previous service as the Research Site Director for a "National Institute of Justice funded project which sought to provide an in-depth look at how different police departments' use of force policies influenced outcomes."

Assistant Professor
Illinois State University
SIU Alumnus, 2001 (B.A.) & 2003 (M.A.)


Yumi E. Suzuki

Yumi SuzukiYumi E. Suzuki is an assistant professor in the School of Community Affairs at Witchita State University. Dr. Yumi received a B.A. in Psychology from Southern Oregon University, an M.A. in Administration of Justice from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, and a Ph.D. in Criminal Justice from University at Albany, SUNY.

During her eight-year tenure at the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services, Dr. Yumi was involved in juvenile aftercare evaluations, offender risk assessment, and reentry programs. Dr. Yumi’s primary research interests include crime victims, rape/sexual assault, mental illness & crime, and comparative criminology. Her current research encompasses sexual violence (sex trafficking, campus rape) and social perception of gender and the criminal justice system. Having lived in Japan and Thailand, Dr. Yumi is particularly interested in comparative perspectives of victimization. She previously taught at University at Albany, SUNY, Sage Colleges of Albany, and the University of South Dakota.

Assistant Professor
Wichita State University
SIU Alumna 2001 (M.A.)


JawJeong Wu

JawJeong WuJawJeong Wu is an assistant professor in the department of Criminal Justice at New York's Buffalo State University. After earning his M.A. at SIU Carbondale, Wu went on to finish his Ph.D. at University of Nebraska.

His research interests include comparative criminal justice, criminological theory, hate crime laws, and sentencing disparity. His recent articles have appeared in Crime and Delinquency and Criminal Justice Policy Review.

Additionally, he is the published author of "Citizenship Status, Race, Ethnicity, and Their Effects on Sentencing," a textbook which examines the independent effect of citizenship status and its joint effect with other social groupings on sentencing outcomes.

Assistant Professor
Buffalo State University
SIU Alumnus (M.A.)


Michael T. Anderson

Michael AndersonSince 1991, Michael has worked for the Florida Department of Corrections in several positions both in institutions and community corrections, to include classification officer, field probation and parole officer, case analyst/auditor, field leasing agent for community corrections, Deputy Circuit Administrator for the 13th Judicial Circuit/Hillsborough County Florida, Deputy Regional Director for the Southern Region of Florida and currently Regional Director for the Northern Region of Florida. Michael received a B.S. degree in Administration of Justice from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.

Anderson is a 2013 graduate of both the Florida Criminal Justice Executive Institutes Senior Leadership Program and 2006 Correctional Supervisory Leadership Program. He's a member of the Florida Association of Community Corrections where he serves as a board member, member of the Florida Council on Crime and Deliquency, a member of the American Probation and Parole Association (APPA), and a member of the American Correctional Association (ACA) where he was recently elected to the ACA Delegate Assembly.

Michael T. Anderson
Regional Director
North Region Office of Community Corrections
Florida Department of Corrections
SIUC Alumnus 1990


Nick Ellis

Nick Ellis"I attended SIUC from 2000-2004. I graduated with a BA in Administration of Justice in May 2004, when I was also selected as the College of Liberal Arts Valedictorian. While attending SIUC, I was selected as an Undergraduate Research Assistant with the Center for the Study of Crime, Deliquency and Corrections where I assisted two professors with a research project for the Wheaton (IL) Police Department. During my senior year, I worked with the Illinois State Police as an intern. After SIUC, I continued my education, receiving a Master of Science in Justice Studies from Arizona State University (ASU) in 2006. During my time at ASU I co-authored a manuscript that was published in Youth & Society in 2008. While working towards my degree I also worked for the ASU Police Department as a Police Aide and Police Aide Lead.

I became a Police Officer for the City of Madison, WI in May 2008. I have taken an active role in the Department, serving as a Background Investigator, Mental Health Liaison Officer, and a Field Training Officer. I also became involved in the Officer Advisory Committee in 2012, where I am currently serving as the Vice Chair. This committee meets directly with the Chief of Police on a monthly basis to discuss a wide variety of Department issues. In 2014, I was promoted to the rank of Sergeant. I am currently serving as a Patrol Field Supervisor with a nine officer platoon directly under my supervision.

I am married to my fellow SIUC Alumna, Laura, and together we have two girls. Alexandra is 6 years old and Anneliese is 2 years old."

Sergeant Nicholas Ellis
City of Madison, WI Police Department
SIUC Alumnus 2004


Rob Thomason

Rob Thomason, Alumnus"I attended SIUC from 1994-1998 and graduated with a BA in Administration of Justice May 1998. While attending SIU I was a member of the Saluki Patrol reaching the rank of Sergeant. The experience and friends I made during my time at SIU will be with me forever. I continued my education receiving a Master of Science in Criminal Justice Administration from Lindenwood University in 2006. I became a Police Officer for the City of Belleville Illinois in January 2000.

I was named Police Officer of the year as a rookie in 2000. I later became a Field Training Officer. In 2004 I was assigned to the Metro East Auto Theft Task Force. In 2005 I was again named officer of the year after stopping a criminal sexual assault in progress. In 2007 I was assigned to the Investigation Division where I am still working as a Detective. I am also a Homicide Investigator with the Major Case Squad of Greater St. Louis.

I am married to my fellow SIU Alum Angie and together we have two incredible boys Drew 4, and Noah 3 months."

Detective Rob Thomason
Belleville Police Department
SIU Alumnus 1998


Akira Satomi

Akira Satomi, AlumnusAkira Satomi earned his M.A. in Administration of Justice in 2007. He has worked for the Ministry of Justice in Japan as a clinical psychologist since 2002. After returning the Japan, he worked for the prison in Kyoto for three years before being transferred to central administration. He credits Emeritus Professor Elmer H. Johnson for providing him opportunities to study at SIU. Mr. Satomi considers his SIU studies a rewarding way to broaden his knowledge of criminology and to apply current information to his work and practice as a clinical psychologist.

Akira Satomi
Clinical Psychologist
Ministry of Justice, Japan


David Polensky

David Polensky graduated from SIU in 1976 and has had a successful career in the area of private security. He initiated a security program for a local corporation, which merged with a defense contractor and his responsibilities grew to include classified documents in company operations. Since then, Mr. Polensky has worked in security consulting for Gage Babcock & Associates (8 years) and Kroll Security (7 years). He provides security consulting and design engineering services for government agencies, corporate clients, and schools in the U.S. and around the world. Since 9/11, he has seen demand for the security business skyrocket in all areas of business and government operations!

David W. Polensky
Senior Security Consultant
The Fire Protection International Consortium
Downers Grove, IL


Kim Butler

Kim ButlerNews article below from the Southern Illinoisan (Wednesday, April 17, 2014):

CHESTER -- Kim Butler, a 20-year veteran of the Illinois Department of Corrections, was named warden of Menard Correctional Center on Wednesday.

She is the first woman to serve as warden at the maximum-security prison in Chester. 

“Kim is an outstanding professional with an excellent record of performance at all levels of corrections. With such a varied list of accomplishments, she has earned this new assignment, and I have full confidence in her ability to continue the fine work being done at Menard Correctional Center,” IDOC Director Salvador A. “Tony” Godinez said in a news release.

A graduate of SIU, she majored in administration of justice with a double minor in criminal justice and psychology.

Butler joined IDOC as a correctional counselor. She later worked as a correctional officer, Bureau of Identification supervisor, hostage negotiator, casework supervisor and clinical services supervisor. Butler has been assistant warden of programs at Menard since 2012.

She is a veteran of the first Gulf War and a lifelong member of the VFW. Her volunteer work includes the American Red Cross, with assistance after recent natural disasters in and near Randolph County.

“At all times, my first and foremost thoughts are of staff safety and the well-being of everyone at Menard," Butler said in a news release. “Running Menard is one of the biggest challenges I have had in my life. At any prison, each day presents new matters to deal with and the great officers, sergeants, lieutenants, majors and staff help us meet any challenge. We’ve been successful in running a safe and secure facility, and I have no doubt that will continue, thanks to this team.”

Butler succeeds the retiring Rick Harrington, who capped a 20-year career with IDOC by running Menard for 17 months.

She is the second woman to be appointed warden of an all-male, maximum security prison in Illinois history.


Gary Waint

Gary Waint worked as a juvenile officer in Moberly, Missouri and served on the Missouri Juvenile Justice Advisory Group for many years before accepting a position with the Office of State Courts Administrator. He has initiated many innovative research on important issues facing juvenile and criminal courts, and oversees the unit which, in cooperation with the Judicial Education Commission, coordinates a broad range of training and certificate programs for court personnel. The Division he leads provides research and statistical data analysis in areas of juvenile justice, criminal justice, court processing and other topics. It also functions to support areas of permanency planning for children in foster care, accommodations to meet the Americans with Disability Act, interpreter services for the courts, programs for juvenile offenders, court security, and automation of juvenile courts. Missouri’s juvenile justice system has been nationally recognized for advances in which Mr. Waint has had a part.

Gary J. Waint
Deputy State Courts Administrator &
Director of the Division of Court Programs, Research and Education
Office of the State Courts Administrator
Jefferson City, Missouri
AJ Graduate Student, 1979-80