PORTLAND, Ore. (Portland Tribune) — Mike Reese will bring more than 30 years of experience, including time as Portland police chief and Multnomah County sheriff, as the new director of the Oregon Department of Corrections.
Gov. Tina Kotek announced his appointment on Tuesday, Oct. 24. The agency has been without a permanent director since August 2022, when Colette Peters was named director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons within the U.S. Department of Justice. Peters had held her state position for a decade, and outgoing Gov. Kate Brown left the vacancy to her successor.
“I am grateful to Acting Director Heidi Steward stepping up to lead and staying the course through the pandemic. I have confidence in incoming Director Reese’s ability to bring a clear vision and advance the organizational and cultural changes needed to bring forward the next chapter at DOC. He has an unparalleled record within the public safety sector for being a collaborator and a problem solver, guided by justice, equity, and a commitment to uphold the public’s trust,” Kotek said.
Reese’s appointment is subject to confirmation by the Oregon Senate, which is scheduled to meet in early November.
Reese is not the first former law enforcement officer to lead the agency, which gained department status in 1987 after having been a division within the Department of Human Services, then known as Human Resources.
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