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Director of the Illinois Department of Corrections - S.A. Godinez

S.A. Godinez | Director

Governor Pat Quinn appointed S. A. Godinez as director of the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC), which became effective May 2, 2011.  He was unanimously confirmed as director by the Illinois Senate on May 5, 2011.  Prior to his appointment, Godinez served as executive director of the Cook County Department of Corrections since June 2006.

Godinez began his correctional career as a reentry counselor with IDOC in 1973 and promoted through the ranks in the agency’s Juvenile Division as a parole counselor, assessment counselor and assessment unit administrator.

In 1981, he was appointed as assistant warden of programs at Stateville Correctional Center and later became assistant warden of operations there until 1989 when he left to serve as warden of the newly opened super-maximum prison in Ely, Nevada. Godinez returned to Illinois in September 1991 as warden at Stateville Correctional Center.  

In February 1995, he joined Michigan Department of Corrections as deputy director of administration and programs where he served until August 1997.  He later accepted the appointment as facility administrator with Wackenhut Corrections Corporation with assignments in various locations, including Puerto Rico and Pennsylvania.

Godinez later became administrator of Juvenile Field Services for IDOC in 1998, but rejoined Wackenhut Corrections Corporation a year later with assignments in Louisiana and Florida.

Godinez returned to Illinois in 2001 serving Cook County as deputy chief of Juvenile Probation for the western suburbs and as supervisor of the community alternatives units, which included electronic monitoring and home detention.

In November 2003, he was appointed as chief of operations for IDOC and given additional responsibilities as chief of staff in 2005. He served in those positions before joining as executive director of the Cook County Department of Corrections in June 2006.

In addition to his more than 40 years of corrections experience, Godinez has participated in professional associations related to anti-violence and corrections policy nationwide.

Godinez received a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from the University of Illinois-Chicago in 1973 and a master’s degree in corrections from Chicago State University in 1978.

IDOC operates 25 prisons throughout Illinois in addition to work camps, boot camps and adult transition centers.  The agency is committed to reducing recidivism, operating a safe and secure prison system as well as enhancing prison-based treatment, prevention programs and the successful reentry of inmates into society.

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