Welcome to Association of Women Executives in Corrections

AWEC Leadership

Executive Committee

Theresa C. Lantz

President

Theresa C. Lantz began her corrections career in 1976 as a correctional officer in the District of Columbia Department of Corrections. She also served as a correctional counselor at two male facilities and staff training manager in that system. In 1988, she joined the National Institute of Corrections – Academy in Boulder, Colorado as a Correctional Program Specialist. She was appointed as the Director of Training and Staff Development for the Connecticut Department of Correction in 1989, the beginning of a rewarding 20-year career with that agency. In 1991, she was appointed as Deputy Commissioner for Administration, and in 1993 was appointed Warden of the newly constructed high security facility for women offenders. She served as the Warden of two high security male facilities for 4 years, and in 2000 was again appointed as Deputy Commissioner of Administration.

In 2003, Theresa was appointed as the Commissioner of the agency, with responsibility over 18 correctional facilities (jails and prisons), 7,000 staff and 23,000 offenders under supervision. Since her retirement from the CT DOC on June 30, 2009 she has been working as a corrections consultant with federal, state, municipal, and private agencies. Her work has included staff training, leadership development, staff culture and organizational development, strategic planning, expert witness, facility security assessments, and she is one of the principle authors of the NIC publication APEX: Achieving Performance Excellence. She holds BS and MS degrees in Criminal Justice, and was an adjunct criminal justice instructor for 20 years at Tunxis Community College, CT. Theresa is proud to serve as the AWEC President for two years beginning in September 2015.

Shirley Moore Smeal

President-Elect

Ms. Moore Smeal is currently the Executive Deputy Secretary for the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections, a position she has held since April 2010. She is second in command of the agency responsible for nearly 16,000 staff and over 50,000 inmates.  As Executive Deputy Secretary, she oversees numerous administrative, programmatic, security and operational areas for the Department.

Execuive Deputy Secretary Moore Smeal began her career in corrections in 1987 as a clerk typist at SCI Huntingdon and was promoted to purchasing agent at SCI Smithfield in 1988.  She later was promoted to corrections supeintendent’s assistant at SCI Albion, a position she held until 1999, when she was promoted to unit manager at SCI Camp Hill.  In 2001, she was appointed as the executive assistant to the Secretary of Corrections and Deputy Secretary for Administration.  She moved progressively up the correctional ranks serving in increasingly responsible positions of deputy superintendent, superintendent of SCI Muncy, and regional deputy secretary.  In August of 2010, she was appointed by then Governor Edward Rendell to serve as the Acting Secretary of Corrections, a position she held until January 2011.

She has served as chairperson for the annual Executive Women’s Leadership Conference and was chairperson for the 2014 Women Working in Corrections and Juvenile Justice Conference.  She has been honored by the National Organization of Black Women in Law Enforcement’s 2012 Trailblazer Award for becoming the highest ranking female in the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections.  Moore Smeal is a member of the Pennsylvania Prison Warden’s Association (PPWA), American Correctional Association (ACA) and Association of Women Executives in Corrections (AWEC).  Moore Smeal holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Edinboro Universtiy.

Helen Marberry

Vice-President

Helen J. Marberry is the Regional Director of the Southeast Region. She began her BOP career as a Case Manager at FCI Otisville (NY) in 1991, and held positions of increasing responsibility at the FCC Allenwood LSCI (PA) and the Office of Internal Affairs in Aurora, CO, before being named Associate Warden (AW) at FCI Oxford (WI) in 2000. From 2002-04, she served as Associate Warden at USP Leavenworth (KS), before being promoted to Warden at FCI Milan (MI). She served as Warden at FCI McKean (PA) from 2006 until 2008 when she became the first female Complex Warden at FCC Terre Haute (IN). In 2010 she was named Assistant Director of the Program Review Division (PRD) and also served as the agency’s Equal Opportunity Director. Ms. Marberry was selected Regional Director for the Southeast Region on April 13, 2012, and she assumed the duties of that position on August 12, 2012.

RD Marberry received both her Bachelors and Masters of Science degrees from the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg, MO. Before joining the Bureau, she served with the St. Louis County Department of Justice Services and the State of Missouri. She is a member of the American Correctional Association, the National Association of Blacks in Criminal Justice, and the Association of Women Executives in Corrections. She joined the ranks of the Senior Executive Service in December 2006.

Maureen Buell

Secretary

Maureen Buell has been with the National Institute of Corrections since 2001.  She leads NIC’s Justice Involved Women’s initiative in the development of evidence-based and gender-informed policy, procedure and practice to improve outcomes in the management of women in jails, prisons, reentry and community corrections.  Additionally she manages a compassion fatigue and secondary trauma initiative which addresses the impact on stress and fatigue on organizations,  staff, and their families. Prior to coming to NIC, Ms. Buell was with the VT Dept. of Corrections in a variety of roles to include probation and parole officer, program services manager and director of women and family services.  She holds a Master of Science in Administration. Some of her publications include Buell, Maureen & Cumming, G. Supervision of the Sex Offender, Safer Society Press, 1998; “Policy Development in the USA” by Maureen Buell, Phyllis Modley, and Patricia Van Voorhis in Working with Women Offenders in the Community, edited by Sheehan, McIvor, G and Trotter, C,. Willam Press, 2010.  She has written numerous articles related to sex offenders, the impact of parental incarceration and justice involved women and co-authored a chapter in Working with Women Offenders in the Community (Willan Publishing).  Ms. Buell has served on several boards and is a member of Association of Women Executives in Corrections.

Marilyn (Lynn) McAuley

Treasurer

Marilyn (Lynn) McAuley has been a member of AWEC for around twenty years currently serving as treasurer of the organization. She began her career in Criminal Justice with the Washington Department of Corrections in 1980 as Assistant Director Correctional Industries (CI) Division later promoting to CI Director and has held CI Director positions in Hawaii Department of Public Safety, Idaho Department of Corrections and Wyoming Department of Corrections and Workforce Development Bureau Chief responsible for CI, Education and Vocational Education in the Arizona Department of Corrections. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree, Business Administration from Fairleigh Dickenson University and Master of Criminal Justice from Boise State University.

She has been active in Correctional Associations including: ACA serving as Chair of the membership committee for the last ten years elected Delegate Assembly member representing Education and member of various committees; National Correctional Industries Association (NCIA) serving as first female president after filling all of the executive committee positions and a member of the board for over 25 years; member of North American Association of Wardens and Superintendents, Wyoming Criminal Justice Association, founding member of Hawaii Criminal Justice Association, founding member of National Community Correction Sentencing Association, Charter member of National Jail Industries Association, Past President and board member. She was the first female to receive the NCIA Rodli Award and was recipient of Washington State Governor’s Distinguished Management Leadership Award.

Patricia L Caruso

Immediate Past President

AWEC President Patricia L. Caruso spent 23 years with the Michigan Department of Corrections including nine years as a warden and almost eight years as the Director of the Department, serving as a cabinet member to Governor Jennifer Granholm. She retired from the Department on January 1, 2011. During her tenure the Department successfully reduced the prison population by more than 7,500 prisoners, implemented the nationally acclaimed Michigan Prisoner Reentry Initiative, realized a 33% reduction in recidivism, greatly expanded public and private community partnerships, increased use of electronic monitoring, and closed 14 facilities.

In 2010 she was the recipient of the Michael Francke award, presented annually to the outstanding corrections director in the country. She is a past president of the Association of State Correctional Administrators and the North American Association of Wardens and Superintendents. She is also a past Vice President of the American Correctional Association and remains active in a number of other professional organizations. Director Caruso received a B.A. in political science and sociology from Lake Superior State University and a Master of Arts in comprehensive occupational education from the University of Michigan.

Currently, Director Caruso is the lead facilitator of the Warden Peer Interaction program at Sam Houston State University and the facilitator of the National Institute of Corrections’ flagship leadership program, Executive Excellence. She is frequently asked to speak at the local, state, and national level on topics including the story of Michigan’s successful prison population reduction, prisoner reentry, professional management in the public sector, women in corrections, leadership, over-criminalization, sentencing reform, the politics of corrections, etc….

Judith Lambert

Chief Financial Officer

Judy Lambert began her career with the State of Tennessee, Comptroller of the Treasury in September 1973 as an auditor specializing in the field of corrections. After spending four years with this department, she transferred to the Tennessee Department of Correction, Fiscal Services Section in December 1977. While holding numerous positions within this section, she was promoted to the Judicial Cost Accountant position in September 2000 where she was responsible for a budget of $195,000,000. Judy held this position until her retirement on June 30, 2014 after serving 40 plus years with the State of Tennessee.

During her career she was very active in the Tennessee Correctional Association where she was awarded the prestigious Charles Traughber Award. She is currently on the finance committee of the Southern States Correctional Association and has been appointed the chief financial officer for the 2016 conferences to be held in Tennessee. She began her membership in AWEC in 2003 and has served on the Executive Board since 2006. In February 2015, she resigned her position on the AWEC Executive Board as Treasurer and was appointed as the first AWEC Chief Financial Officer.

Francine Perretta-

Executive Director

Francine Perretta began her career in St. Lawrence County Probation in Canton, NY as a Probation Officer. She held the titles of Probation Officer, Senior Probation Offcier and Probation Supervisor. She served as their Director from 1987-2010. During her careeer with the department, Francine began many innovative programs and was known on the national level as a rural model for many programs.

Francine Perretta became the Deputy Commissioner for the Westchester County Probation Department in 2010. In February of 2017 after 40 years in Community Corrections, Francine retired. Francine has been an active member of APPA and currently serves on the Executive Committee as the Affliate Representative for AWEC. She is also an active member of NAPE and currently serves as Secretary of the organization. In 2016, Francine was awarded the George Keiser Award for excellence in leadership by NAPE.

Francine became the Executive Director of AWEC May 1, 2017. She has been a founding member of AWEC, past president and a member of variuos committees. Francine brings many years of community corrections experience to the position.

Past Presidents/Board of Directors
  • Francine Perretta
  • Andie Moss
  • Marilyn Chandler Ford, Ph.D.
  • Janitta Antoine
  • Sharon Johnson Rion
  • Bona Miller
  • Mary Livers
  • Annie Harvey
  • Kathy Waters
Board of Directors
  • Leann Bertsch
  • Evelyn Bush
  • Joyce K. Conley, Ph.D.
  • Connie Cruz
  • Maureen Cruz
  • Linda Dodson
  • Darla Elliot
  • Wendy Gardner
  • Jennie Lancaster
  • Brenda Davis Murrell
  • Sandra Osteen
  • Melanie Pereira, Esquire
  • Joanie Shoemaker
  • LaDonna Thompson
  • Kim White
  • Andie Moss
  • Marilyn Chandler Ford, Ph.D.
  • Janitta Antoine
  • Sharon Johnson Rion
  • Bona Miller