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State Parole Board Gets New Member: Kathy Henry to Help Decide on Prisoners

JACKSON, Miss.–Mississippi’s State Parole Board has a new member. Kathy Henry was appointed by Gov. Phil Bryant Friday to fill the seat left vacant by retired Army Master Sgt. Clarence Brown of Yazoo City, who stepped down on June 30, after serving for more than eight years. 

Bryant’s office made the announcement Friday afternoon. Henry must be confirmed by the state Senate in the 2015 legislative session.

Henry holds a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in counseling psychology. She worked for 25 years as a public school English teacher and school counselor and served on the Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee for more than 20 years. She was originally appointed to the committee by Gov. Kirk Fordice. She was also named as Mississippi’s representative on the National Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee by Gov. Haley Barbour.

Henry additionally served for eight years on the staff of former Congressman Chip Pickering, where her duties required her to work with the U.S. Department of Justice and the Mississippi Department of Corrections.

“I am deeply honored by this appointment by Governor Phil Bryant,” Henry said.  “I look forward to serving on the Mississippi Parole Board and will work to serve Mississippi’s citizens and communities, as well as the victims and the incarcerated in a fair manner.”

As for Brown’s service, Bryant said the following in a news release:

I thank Master Sgt. Brown for his service to his state and to his country and wish him well in his future endeavors. I am pleased to appoint Kathy and know that her work as a teacher and school counselor and her 20 years of experience in juvenile justice make her well qualified to serve on the parole board.

The Mississippi Parole Board is comprised of one chairman and four active members, each appointed at-large.  There are no term limits for members. The board meets weekly to review the cases of state offenders to determine parole eligibility. 

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