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      State Corrections Director Announces Retirement Plans

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      State officials have announced the retirement plans of Nebraska's director of the Department of Correctional Services.

      Gov. Dave Heineman announced Monday that Robert "Bob" Houston will be retiring after spending nearly four decades with the department.

      Houston has worked in the department for 38 years, having started his career as a counselor at the Nebraska State Penitentiary. He worked his way up in the system and was appointed to director in 2005 by Heineman.

      "I thank Bob for his nearly four decades of excellentservice to the Department of Correctional Services," Heineman said following the announcement. "Bobis a well-respected professional and I appreciate his commitment to thecriminal justice system."

      "It has been my pleasure to serve thecitizens of Nebraska through the Department of Correctional Services for somany decades of my life," said Houston. "I believe in this department andthe staff members who work diligently day in and day out to ensure the safetyof our prisons and Nebraska communities. I can only hope my retirement will beas rewarding as my years of service to the State of Nebraska and the Departmentof Correctional Services."

      Officials say Houston's accomplishments include becoming one of only 10 states in the nation to achieve full accreditation of all facilities and programs by the American Correctional Association as well as the expansion of mental health treatment and other program opportunities for inmates.

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