Dr. Steve Hammond named exec. director of Florida TaxWatch's Center for Smart Justice

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Florida TaxWatch is pleased to announce Steven Hammond, Ph.D., as the new Executive Director of the Florida TaxWatch Center for Smart Justice, effective May 22, 2012.

Dr. Hammond assumes his new duties with extensive education and experience in executive management and leadership. He earned his undergraduate degree from the United States Military Academy at West Point, and subsequently earned three post-graduate degrees, including a Doctor of Philosophy in Organizational Psychology and Behavior from Columbia University.

Throughout his career leading and managing organizations in the federal, state, educational, and corporate sectors, Dr. Hammond has demonstrated a strong personal commitment to issues relating tojustice reform and prison ministry. In 1979, he and his wife were instrumental in starting a prison ministry called Bethany Group at the federal prison inFort Leavenworth, Kansas—a program that continues to this day. For the past several years, Dr. and Mrs. Hammond have been conducting weekly services for inmates at the Wakulla Correctional Institution, and Dr. Hammond makes regular visits to inmates on Florida’s Death Row, as well to inmates in solitary confinement at Florida State Prison.

Dr. Hammond served in the US Army as a commissioned officer, achieving the rank of Colonel, and culminated his federal service as Director of the Office of Leader Development at the United States Military Academy, where he played a key role in chairing and authoring institutionalinitiatives to eliminate hazing and abusive leadership practices. During this period, Dr. Hammond also served as Head of the Department of Tactics and Deputy Dean of Students, with responsibility for the leadership and training of the 4,200 students that comprise the Corps of Cadets.

Upon his departure from the federal sector, Dr. Hammond served for 5 years in Florida’s Senior Management Service as Senior Director of General Tax Administration in the Florida Department of Revenue (FDOR).  In 1998, the exemplary productivity of FDOR and General Tax Administration was formally recognized as the first state agency in Florida to receive the Governor’s Sterling Award for quality management and performance excellence.

He subsequently directed and authored the Statewide Security Assessment of Florida Seaports for the Executive Office of the Governor.  The study was cited in the report of the Presidential Inter-Agency Commission on Crime and Security in US Seaports as an example for other states to emulate.  In recognition of the importance of this effort, the National Cargo Security Council (NCSC) named Dr. Hammond to receive their prestigious Industry Leadership Award for 2000.

Dr. Hammond’s commitment to helping foster positive outcomes for inmates and leadership experience in a variety of high-profilearenas will serve him well as the new Executive Director of the Center for Smart Justice, and Florida TaxWatch is excited to bring him on board.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.