TENNESSEE (WATE) — Tennessee Department of Correction Commissioner Tony Parker announced his retirement after 38 years.
Parker said TDOC has been his professional home for that long, “The people at the Department of Corrections are phenomenal. They’re really truly some of the best, most dedicated public servants there are. The mission of corrections is difficult on the best of days, but the men and women of TDOC – they show up every day and they work in a very difficult environment to enhance public safety. The state of Tennessee should be so proud of the men and women who serve in this department, I know I am and it’s just been truly an honor to serve with these people for so many years.”
Parker started as a correctional officer and became commissioner after his initial appointment by former Governor Bill Haslam in 2016 and re-appointment by Governor Bill Lee in 2019. Before being named Commissioner, Parker served as Assistant Commissioner, Correctional Administrator, and Warden, among other roles.
“It has been the honor of my lifetime to serve Tennessee and its citizens. May God continue to bless our great state,” Parker said.
The governor also released a statement regarding Parker.
“Tony Parker is a true public servant, and I am deeply grateful for his commitment to making Tennessee a safer place to live, work and raise a family,” said Gov. Lee. “Over the last four decades, Commissioner Parker played a pivotal role in efforts to enhance public safety and improve Tennessee’s criminal justice system, and his impact on the Department of Correction will be seen for many years to come. Maria and I wish Commissioner Parker and his family the best in their next chapter.”