ST. LOUIS COUNTY (September 16, 2020) Douglas W. Burris, former Chief Probation Officer for the Eastern District of Missouri, has been named Acting Director of Justice Services.
“I am thrilled that Doug has agreed to join my administration, building on the reforms that we have worked so hard on since April 2019,” said County Executive Dr. Sam Page.
St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Wesley Bell said Burris is the right choice to lead Justice Services. “That’s a very tough job with a lot that needs to be done. Doug has the experience and commitment to do just that.”
U.S. Attorney Jeffrey B. Jensen praised the work of Burris.
“The best indication of future performance is past performance,” Jensen said. “In the federal system, as Chief Probation Officer, Doug Burris designed and implemented a system that has yielded some of the lowest recidivism rates in the United States. Doug’s career demonstrated his flawless administrative skills and ability to respect all involved in the criminal justice system.”
U.S. District Chief Judge Rodney Sippel said of Burris: “He was extraordinarily effective and innovative in dealing with ex-offenders as they reentered society. He was recognized around the country for his efforts in the Eastern District of Missouri, receiving national awards.”
Burris said he is looking forward to working with Justice Center’s professional staff, the center’s residents and the community. “Developing new leaders from within and teaming with the community for better outcomes is just an opportunity I could not pass up,” Burris said.
Burris received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Kansas and a master’s degree from the University of Oklahoma. After a career as an executive in the private sector, he began work as a federal probation officer in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1995 and became Chief Probation Officer in the Eastern District of Missouri in 2000. He retired in February 2018. Burris will become acting director September 28 and serve in that role until confirmed as director by the County Council.