Dave Mahoney to Lead Transition of Newly Created Dane County Department of Justice Reform

June 09, 2023
Ariana Vruwink, 608-267-8823
County Executive

Former Sheriff Returns to Dane County to Help Launch New County Department

Former long-time Dane County Sheriff Dave Mahoney is returning to county employment to serve as director of Dane County’s new Department of Justice Reform, County Executive Joe Parisi announced today. The appointment will be for a limited term until early next year, while the new agency gets up and running.

The new Department of Justice Reform was created in the 2023 Dane County budget to help lead the county’s ongoing work at reducing racial disparities and disproportionate incarceration in the criminal justice system.

“I can’t think of anyone better suited to help start up a brand new agency focused on the work Dave cared so deeply about when he served as our Sheriff,” County Executive Joe Parisi said. “Dave is a well-respected community leader who brings people together, which is exactly what’s needed to pursue the next round of reforms in our criminal justice system.”

Mahoney served as Dane County Sheriff from 2006 until he retired in May of 2021.

“I am excited to be rejoining our dedicated criminal justice partners, our Sheriff, District Attorney, Chief Judge and the Criminal Justice Council in implementing a data driven plan for criminal justice reform,” Mahoney said. “I thank County Executive Parisi for his confidence and support in leading this newly created department and the opportunity for continued progress and work that our citizens can be proud of implementing.”

Mahoney will serve while the county retains a national recruitment firm to assist with pursuing talent from across the country to help fill the director position on a permanent basis. Mahoney won’t be a candidate for that role but will help that individual transition into it.

A resolution approving a contract for Mahoney’s appointment will be considered by the Dane County Board of Supervisors in the coming weeks. Mahoney will serve until early 2024.

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