Attorney General William P. Barr announced August 19 that he will appoint Dr. Kathleen Hawk Sawyer as the Director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) and Dr. Thomas R. Kane as the Deputy Director. Dr. Hawk Sawyer previously served as Director of BOP from 1992 – 2003.
“I am pleased to welcome back Dr. Hawk Sawyer as the Director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Under Dr. Hawk Sawyer’s previous tenure at the Bureau, she led the agency with excellence, innovation, and efficiency, receiving numerous awards for her outstanding leadership, “ said Attorney General Barr. “I am also pleased to announce Dr. Thomas R. Kane as the Deputy Director of BOP. Dr. Kane served in the Bureau for over thirty years under four Attorneys General and is known for his expertise and proficiency in prison management and organization. During this critical juncture, I am confident Dr. Hawk Sawyer and Dr. Kane will lead BOP with the competence, skill, and resourcefulness they have embodied throughout their government careers. I would also like to thank Hugh Hurwitz, Acting Director of BOP, for his dedication and service to the Bureau over the last fifteen months. I have asked Mr. Hurwitz to return to his responsibilities as Assistant Director of BOP’s Reentry Services Division, where he will work closely with me in overseeing the implementation of one of the Department’s highest priorities, the First Step Act.”
Dr. Kathleen Hawk Sawyer began her Bureau of Prisons career in 1976 as a psychologist at the Federal Correctional Institution (FCI) in Morgantown, West Virginia, and subsequently held positions of increasing responsibility as Chief of Psychology Services at Morgantown; Senior Instructor at the Bureau of Prisons’ Staff Training Academy (STA) in Glynco, Georgia; Associate Warden at FCI Fort Worth, Texas; the Bureau’s Chief of Staff Training at STA; and Warden at FCI Butner, North Carolina. In May 1989, she was selected as Assistant Director for the Program Review Division, where she was responsible for developing and implementing a system of internal controls for all Bureau operations. In 1992, Attorney General Barr appointed Dr. Hawk Sawyer as Director of BOP. While serving as Director for over a decade, she introduced the Forward Thinking Initiative, which was designed to prepare the agency to meet future demands and conditions. Additionally, she implemented reengineering initiatives intended to identify and eliminate unnecessary or redundant functions in order to maximize staff attention to inmates and yield agency-wide cost savings. While Director, Dr. Hawk Sawyer received numerous awards for service and leadership, including the Attorney General’s Award for Excellence in Management in 1992, the Presidential Rank Award for Meritorious Service in 1994 and 2000, and the Presidential Distinguished Executive Award in 1997. She served as Director until she retired in 2003.
Dr. Thomas R. Kane served in the Bureau of Prisons from 1977 to 2018, including 30 years in multiple senior leadership positions such as Chief of Staff, Assistant Director, Deputy Director, and Acting Director under four Attorneys General. While at BOP, he provided long-term leadership for the enhancement of processes to assess prisoner risk level and need for treatment, as well as the BOP business process by reengineering initiatives resulting in significant organizational cost efficiencies and process improvement. Additionally, he served as a member of the FBI Advisory Policy Board for Criminal Justice Information Services, the District of Columbia Sentencing Commission, and the BOP Health Services Governing Board. Dr. Kane received numerous awards and other recognition throughout his career, including the Attorney General’s Medallion, two Meritorious Presidential Rank Awards, and the BOP Distinguished Service Medal. Dr. Kane also serves as a member of the American Psychological Association and the American Correctional Association.