FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. — Gov. Dannel Malloy on Monday announced the appointment of Dora B. Schriro as the next commissioner of the state Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection. She will be the first woman to head Connecticut's public safety operations.
Schriro is currently the commissioner of the New York City Department of Correction, a position she’s held since 2009, when she was appointed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Malloy said she will begin her new role on Jan. 31, succeeding current Commissioner Ruben Bradford, who is retiring effective Feb. 1.
“Dora Schriro is immensely qualified and has proven herself to be an exceptional leader in several states across the country, specifically when it comes to focusing on methods that reduce recidivism and lower crime,” Malloy said during an afternoon press conference. “Her efforts working directly with the victims of crime and developing innovative, state-of-the-art processes to reduce violence and keep offenders from returning to jail will be of great value to our state as we continue to implement these types of techniques.” Before her role in New York, Schriro worked in Washington, D.C., as a special adviser to then- Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano on Immigration and Customs Enforcement policies, and was the founding director of the Office of Detention Policy and Planning for the department. In that position, she directed work on the department’s plan to overhaul the nation’s immigration detention system.
During her career, Schriro also served six years as the director of the Arizona Department of Corrections, and eight years as director of the Missouri Department of Corrections. In each state, she was the first woman selected to lead those agencies.
From 1984 to 1989, Schriro served in then-New York City Mayor Edward Koch’s administration, first as assistant to the deputy director in the Office of Criminal Justice, and then as assistant commissioner in the Department of Correction.
“It is a great honor and an exceptional opportunity to be selected by Gov. Malloy to serve as commissioner,” Schriro said. “I have dedicated my career to public service and public safety, and I look forward to working with the outstanding men and women who make up the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection.
“We have all that it takes to preserve and improve the quality of life in communities throughout Connecticut: commitment to excellence, the resolve to persevere, and the capacity to excel.”
Schriro has a law degree from St. Louis University; a doctoral degree of education from Columbia University; a master’s from the University of Massachusetts-Boston; and a bachelor’s from Northeastern University. She has taught graduate level courses in law and criminal justice, and is published in the areas of correction and immigration innovation and systems reform.