Jen Aholt| Chief Executive Officer Illinois Correctional Industries
Jen Aholt was named chief executive officer of Illinois Correctional Industries (ICI) in December 2012. As chief executive officer, Aholt oversees the management and operations of ICI, which provides inmates with skills and training necessary to be successful upon release from prison. ICI currently has programs operating in 19 facilities that produce products and provide services. ICI performs this objective at no cost to Illinois taxpayers. The revenue ICI generates from the sale of its products fully funds its entire operation.
Prior to joining ICI, Aholt served as a project manager for the State of Illinois since 2007 and most recently as the Public Safety Shared Services deputy director of projects within the Illinois Department of Corrections. In that position, she was responsible for organizing, overseeing and implementing various projects and associated policies from the department’s strategic plan as well as others in promoting effective, efficient management.
Aholt started in the public safety field, specifically domestic violence, as an emergency response counselor and court advocate for a joint program with Springfield Police Department and Sojourn Shelter and Services until later overseeing a juvenile offender program. The program, which was implemented through Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Capital Region and funded by the Department of Justice, received national recognition for its diversion program utilizing mentoring and public service. Aholt was awarded the Midwest Case Manager of the Year from Big Brothers Big Sisters of America and is a two time recipient of the Above the Call of Duty Award during her time as program coordinator and later as a consultant. As the grant funding ended for the juvenile offender program, an opportunity to join a worldwide company as a consultant and project manager presented itself. The work focused on large scale information technology implementations and efficient management practices for public sector clients.
Aholt earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice with a minor in political science from SIU-Carbondale in 1997 and a master’s in human service administration with special focus on social service administration in 2007. In 2006, she became a certified project management professional with the Project Management Institute.