Former U.S. Prosecutor begins role as new WV Corrections Commissioner

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WTAP) - West Virginia Governor Jim Justice has appointed a federal prosecutor to be the new Commissioner of the state's Division of Corrections.

On Monday, Betsy Jividen, who has been a U.S. federal prosecutor since 1980, started her new job as Commissioner of the West Virginia Division of Corrections, which is part of the Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety.

In 1980, Jividen was the first woman to be sworn in as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Northern District of West Virginia. During her time there, she served as Civil Chief, Senior Litigation Counsel, and two terms as acting and interim U.S. Attorney. She was also named First Assistant United States Attorney by three different U.S. Attorneys.

Jividen served as acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of West Virginia during most of 2017, until U.S. Attorney William J. Powell was sworn in on Oct. 13 following his appointment by President Trump and confirmation by the U.S. Senate.

Jividen replaces acting Commissioner Mike Coleman, who will continue in his other role of deputy director of Correctional Operations for the Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety.

The West Virginia Division of Corrections employs more than 2,000 people and operates 15 prisons, work-release centers and other facilities, which house more than 7,000 inmates.

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