Atencio retires as IDOC director

Henry portrait
Director Henry Atencio
IDOC news release

BOISE, Idaho, Nov. 20, 2018 — After more than 28 years with the Idaho Department of Correction, Henry Atencio is retiring as the agency’s director.

“It has been an honor to serve as director and lead the amazing men and women who do the hard work of protecting our communities and changing lives,” Atencio said. “Our staff give selflessly of themselves to fulfill our mission; they will always have my respect and admiration.” 

Atencio joined IDOC in 1990 as a probation/parole officer in Payette. He went on to serve in a variety of positions including manager of the Division of Probation and Parole’s District 4 office, deputy warden at Idaho State Correctional Institution, chief of the Division of Probation and Parole and deputy director of IDOC. The Idaho Board of Correction appointed Atencio director on Dec. 8, 2016.

“This is the right time for me to begin a new chapter and seek new challenges,” Atencio said. “I will always be grateful to Governor Otter, Governor-elect Little and members of the Board of Correction for the support they gave me as director.”

As director, Atencio implemented reforms to IDOC’s restrictive-housing policies that have become a model for correctional agencies nationwide. His administration also improved the quality of inmate-treatment programs and reduced the amount of time inmates must wait to enroll them. 

Atencio’s retirement is effective Dec. 31, 2018. The Idaho Board of Correction will begin a search for his successor.

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Story published: 11/20/2018
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