Annual Meeting Addendum

[NYCHS Shield]

[post meetingh]
After the NYCHS annual meeting's conclusion, participants linger to chat: from left, NYS DOCS Supervising Superintendent Brian Fischer, SCOC chairman Alan J. Croce, NYC DOC Commissioner William J. Fraser, DOC Warden Gerard O'Gara, DOC Chief of Dept. Robert N. Davoren, and First Deputy Commissioner Gary M. Lanigan.


After the election of officers, copies of the fourth issue of the NYCHS newsletter The Key were distributed at the annual meeting. The issue included an article expressing appreciation to various past and present NYC DOC, NYS DOCS, and DCJS Commissioners and others for their continuing support The article text follows:

NYC DOC Commissioner William J. Fraser, second right, uses the few minutes before the annual meeting to informally greet and chat with participants including, from left, NYS DOCS Supervising Superintendent Brian Fischer, Westchester Community College Professor Hugh O'Rourke, and New York Horticultural Society president Anthony Smith.

"A Word or Two of Appreciation

"A word or two of appreciation seems appropriate as NYCHS moves into its next phrase of development.

"Former Commissioner Michael P. Jacobson had agreed to serve as president our first year but has generously gone way beyond that by serving the past 17 months since the organizational meeting. Without his approval as DOC Commissioner, the initial effort to establish a correctional history society would not have gotten off the ground.

"Likewise, a key early player was Gerard O’Gara whose more recent expanded duties as Bronx jail warden have prompted him to step down as vice president.

Sarina Roffe, NYC Dept. of Juvenile Justice Director of Public Affairs, makes a point during a pre-annual meeting chat with, from left, NYS DOCS Superintendent Brant Kehn, DOCS Supervising Superintendent Fischer and DOC Commissioner Fraser. Getting coffee, with his back to camera, is Correction Officers Benevolent Association director of public information Peter Benjaminson.

"Broadening of NYCHS scope to embrace correctional history throughout the state would not have been possible without the support of then DOC Commissioner Bernard B. Kerik, now stepping down as board chairman in the wake of becoming NYPD Commissioner.

"Their past services as officers and continued services as trustees are deeply appreciated.

"Similarly, our new chairman, DOC Commissioner William J. Fraser, has been a NYCHS supporter from its earliest days as has DOC First Deputy Commissioner Gary M. Lanigan. Both are founding members of the board of trustees.

"The above named made available the good offices of DOC and thus made possible NYCHS emergence and continuance.

NYC DOC Chief of Dept. Robert N. Davoren chats before the annual meeting with DOC Deputy Commissioner Deborah Kurtz, NYCHS curator.

"The active support of founding trustee Glenn S. Goord, DOCS Commissioner, has been a major factor in NYCHS development beyond NYC. Similarly so have been the founding board memberships of our new president, SCOC chairman Alan J. Croce, and DCJS Commissioner Katherine N. Lapp.

"Each officer’s participation has been essential to our success so far. To each: deep thanks. Since space has run out, our next issue will give additional individual citations and details."

A History Repeat

Another article in The Key newsletter copies distributed at the annual meeting was about history repeating itself with the NYPD and NYC DOC Commissioner appointments. The article text follows:

William J. Fraser shows DOC Commissioner shield as his predecessor Bernard B. Kerik, now NYPD Commissioner, joins him after announcement of the appointment. [Photo by C.O. Ralph Smith]

"Deja Vu at NYPD & DOC

"Last Nov. 9 Mayor Giuliani announced appointment of Chief of Dept. William J. Fraser as DOC Commissioner, succeeding Bernard B. Kerik named to head NYPD.

"The appointment came a month after the swear-in of NYPD Commissioner Kerik. For only the second time in NYC DOC's 105-year history has its highest ranking uniformed officer been named Correction Commissioner succeeding one appointed Police Commissioner.

To look back at the July 13, 1999, meeting where the above scene of DOC First Deputy Commissioner Gary M. Lanigan chatting with veteran Board of Correction member Barbara Margolis was photographed, go to the NYCHS organizational start-up page.

"On Jan. 1, 1984, then Chief of Department Jacqueline McMickens became Commissioner, succeeding Benjamin Ward named to head NYPD.

"Fraser is the first member of DOC to rise through each one of the existing uniformed ranks to head the agency.

"McMickens, now a practicing attorney in Brooklyn, was the first member of DOC to rise through the ranks to become Chief of Dept. and later Commissioner without "Acting" in front of the latter title. In her rise, she skipped over one rung in the ladder of uniformed advancement: warden."

For additional NYCHS pages of background on Commissioners Fraser and Kerik as well as links to DOC, NYPD and mayoral web site pages about them, go to a special "2 new commissioners" box of web page links inserted on an archived earlier bio of then Chief of Dept. Fraser.

Go to NYCHS Annual Meeting -- Part I
(Photos, overview of new phase opening for NYCHS, meeting details.)

Photo credit: John Mohan, DOC media services director
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