Dawn-Renee Smith

Dawn-Renee Smith

Chief of staff


Dawn-Renee Smith assumed the role of interim chief of staff in January 2023.

She was appointed deputy director for programs in October 2018. Her position includes oversight of the community corrections facilities as well as the Work Ethic Camp (WEC) and the Nebraska Correctional Center for Women (NCCW). Smith also manages classification and transportation, volunteers, non-clinical programming, reentry services and quality assurance.

“The work of the programs division is central to our ability to keep people safe,” said Smith. “I look forward to working with the programs division team as we continue to provide incarcerated men and women with opportunities for meaningful change.”

Smith started her career with NDCS in 2005 as a caseworker at Tecumseh State Correctional Institution (TSCI). Since then, she has managed the agency’s legislative and communications divisions and served as the administrator for reentry services.  Prior to being named deputy, Smith was chief of staff, providing oversight of research, communications, legislation and policy development and accreditation.

Smith also has a background in human services, with emphasis in behavioral health, grant writing and fundraising.