Border of Arizona and Mexico

Charles Ryan

Charles Ryan

Director of Arizona Department of Corrections


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Charles L. Ryan has more than thirty years of experience in the field of corrections.  He has served as Director of the Arizona Department of Corrections, Deputy Director of Prison Operations, as a prison warden and as a prison administrator. He possesses in-depth, hands-on institutional skills developed at entry-level, supervisory, administrative and executive level positions from minimum to super-maximum security.

Mr. Ryan has extensive experience in the development of correctional institution policy including the formulation of the inmate classification system, the staffing, operation and activation of various prison complexes and the development of budgetary requirements all presented to the executive and legislative branches of government. He has also been instrumental in developing operational processes designed to enhance inmate accountability and safer prisons and detention facilities. He has executive experience in human resources and inmate management processes at an agency employing approximately 10,000 personnel and the custody and control of over 40,000 inmates.

Mr. Ryan holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration from Western International University and a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice from Arizona State University.

Mr. Ryan has been honored with many awards which include:

  • Meritorious Honor Award, Ambassador to Iraq, US Department of State
  • Special Recognition Award, Criminal Division, Assistant Attorney General, US Department of Justice
  • Medal of Valor Award, US Department of Justice
  • Quest Award, Use of Force Study and Policy Development, Arizona Department of Corrections
  • Meritorious Service Award, Arizona Department of Corrections
  • Warden of the Year, Correctional Industries Association
  • Administrator of the Year, Arizona Department of Corrections
  • Administrator of the Year, Arizona Administrator’s Association