Agency Leadership

Agency Leadership

Scott R. Frakes, Director

In 2015, Governor Pete Ricketts appointed Scott R. Frakes director of the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services. He serves as a member of Governor Ricketts’ cabinet and directs an agency of 2,300 staff members and more than 5,000 inmates throughout nine state prisons.

Tasked with transforming Nebraska corrections, Director Frakes has made substantive changes to the way NDCS business is conducted. He is leading organizational change and building strong relationships with community partners. He has implemented an automated sentence calculation process, bringing the agency forward and ensuring individuals complete the sentences to which they were ordered; reformed restrictive housing policies and practices, aligning Nebraska's system with national standards; required the use of data to drive decision-making; and increased capacity for clinical programming and evidence-based programs to target criminal thinking and reduce recidivism. 

“We are building a culture that embraces process improvement methods to ensure we get the full value from every dollar Nebraska taxpayers invest in corrections," said Director Frakes. " We are using sound correctional practices, current technology and evidence-based approaches to do our work. We cannot change people, but we can provide safe, effective and meaningful opportunities for change. That is how we keep people safe.”

Director Frakes is a graduate of The Evergreen State College and former deputy director of prisons for the Washington State Department of Corrections (WADOC). He began his corrections career in 1982, at the Washington State Penitentiary as a correctional officer. He rose through the ranks, becoming superintendent of the Coyote Ridge Corrections Center and the Monroe Correctional Complex in Washington.

He was born and raised in Walla Walla, Washington. He and his wife, Kelly, have been married 40 years and have two adult daughters.

NDCS Executive Team

Diane Sabatka-Rine

Chief of Operations


Robin Spindler, J.D.

Deputy Director for Administrative Services


Dawn-Renee Smith

Deputy director for programs


Harbans Deol, D.O.

Medical Director


Jeremy Elder

Deputy Director for Industries


Erinn Criner

Human Talent Director


Robert Madsen

Deputy Director for Prisons