Interim leader for the Kansas Department of Corrections Named

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In this Dec. 17, 2018 photo, Kansas Gov.-elect Laura Kelly answers questions during an interview with The Associated Press, at the Statehouse in Topeka, Kan. The incoming Democratic governor says her administration will have to do “triage” on problems at state agencies and that fixing them will require extra money and staff. (AP Photo/John Hanna)

Governor-elect Laura Kelly today named the interim leader for the Kansas Department of Corrections. She also announced that she will retain the Adjutant General for interim period to ensure a smooth transition.

Roger Werholtz will serve as interim Secretary for the Department of Corrections and assist the new administration in stabilizing the agency. Werholtz has extensive experience having served as Secretary of Corrections from 2002 to 2010. Previously, he served as Deputy Secretary of Corrections from 1987 to 2002. Earlier in his career, he worked in a variety of community corrections and social welfare positions.

“The Department of Corrections is facing serious challenges that need immediate attention,” said Kelly. “I’m pleased that Roger Werholtz is willing to take the reins at this important time to help get the department back on track.”

Kelly also announced that she will retain Adjutant General Lee Tafanelli on an interim basis in order to ensure a smooth transition in the coming months. Tafanelli was sworn in as adjutant general on Jan. 28, 2011, and promoted to major general in the Kansas National Guard.

“I’m grateful to Maj. Gen. Tafanelli for his willingness to continue in this important position to assist my administration with a smooth transition,” said Kelly.

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