Departments and Divisions


To protect the citizens of the Commonwealth and to provide a safe, secure and humane environment for staff and offenders in carrying out the mandates of the legislative and judicial processes; and, to provide opportunities for offenders to acquire skills which facilitate non-criminal behavior.

 Commissioner's Office

Commissioner Rodney Ballard 


Commissioner Rodney Ballard

Rodney Ballard, a 35-year career law enforcement and corrections’ professional, has been appointed as the new Commissioner for the Kentucky Department of Corrections.

LaDonna Thompson, a 27-year veteran of the Kentucky Department of Corrections, retired as Commissioner March 1.

Ballard assumes his post on March 14.

Ballard comes to the department with decades of experience in both law enforcement and corrections. He previously served as Deputy Commissioner of Corrections for Community Services & Local Facilities from 2008 to 2012. In this position he exercised oversight for both the Division of Probation and Parole and the Department’s Division of Local Facilities, which includes state jail inspectors.

Since 2012, he has served as director of the Division of Community Corrections in Lexington, in charge of the Fayette County Detention Center with its nearly 1,300 beds and $33.5 million budget.

Ballard began his public safety career as a police officer in Northern Kentucky before joining the Kentucky State Police in 1982 for what would be a decorated 17-year career as both Trooper and Investigator.

Upon his retirement from KSP, Ballard served as chief deputy of the Kenton County Detention Center.


Ballard holds a bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice from Northern Kentucky University.

Deputy Commissioner of Support Services, Kimberly Potter-Blair 

Deputy Commissioner of Support Services, Kimberly Potter-Blair

Kimberly Potter-Blair, as Deputy Commissioner of Support Services, is responsible for administrative services, corrections training, budget management, offender information, information technology, population management, and re-entry branch.

Potter-Blair began her career with the Department of Corrections on Feb. 1, 1998 as a Corrections Officer at Blackburn Correctional Complex. She was promoted to caseworker at Blackburn before transferring to the Division of Probation & Parole in District 9 on Dec. 16, 1999. After supervising a caseload of offenders for approximately four years, Potter-Blair was promoted to Assistant District Supervisor for District 9 on Nov. 1, 2003, and then to District Supervisor in October of 2005.

During her time in District 9, which encompasses Fayette County, she was instrumental in the efficient flow of court work in the Fayette Circuit Court system. She has also been active in helping to create the Fayette County Re-Entry Program for offenders on probation and parole, as well as coordinating efforts with the CJ-DATS research project with the University of Kentucky. Additionally, Potter-Blair is a member of the Fayette County Transitions Committee which works to aid in the re-entry of all incarcerated individuals back into the community.

During her career, Potter-Blair has been a member of the Kentucky State Parole Officers’ Association and the Kentucky Council on Crime and Delinquency, where she previously served as President of the Bluegrass Chapter of KCCD. She is a graduate of the inaugural Commissioner’s Executive Leadership Program, which began in May 2005.

Potter-Blair is a graduate of Kentucky State University. Where she received her bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice and a Master's in Public Administration. 

Deputy Commissioner of Adult Institutions, Jim Erwin 

Deputy Commissioner of Adult Institutions, Jim Erwin

James L. Erwin is a 25-year veteran of Corrections.  Before his promotion to Deputy Commissioner he served as Director of Adult Institutions for the Department for three years.

Erwin began his career in August 1985 as a Correctional Officer with Jefferson County.  In 1987 he began work with the state of Kentucky at the Kentucky State Reformatory (KSR), first as a Classification and Treatment Officer and then as a Unit Administrator.

In 1996 Erwin began work for the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction as an inspector of institutional services.  He continued his career in Ohio as a Unit Management Administrator, Deputy Warden, acting Warden and Warden at several Ohio Prisons.  He has been Warden at two institutions with large populations specializing in mental health residential treatment, correctional industries, sex offender treatment and substance abuse treatment.

Erwin is a 1984 graduate of Centre College in Danville and received his master’s degree in Administrative Justice from the University of Louisville in 1987.  He is a member of several professional organizations including the American Correctional Association, North American Association of Wardens and Superintendents, Ohio Wardens and Superintendents Association and International Association of Reentry.

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