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Page updated Jul 23, 2012 3:22 PM

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Inmates Earn GEDs, Food Safety Certification

On Thursday, July 19, Sheriff Dana Lawhorne and his staff hosted a special ceremony to honor the educational accomplishments of 14 inmates at the William G. Truesdale Adult Detention Center.

Education coordinator Krista Sofonia presented Alvin Bell, 54, Stephanie Schwab, 27, and Richard White, 21, with Certificates of Achievement for passing their General Educational Development examinations. They wore caps and gowns and were cheered by visiting family members invited to attend the ceremony. Four other inmates who were released before the ceremony also passed their GED exams. Ms. Sofonia acknowledged the work of GED volunteers, including Sarah Goshorn, a graduate student at Marymount University who is currently doing an internship at the Detention Center.

Seven other inmates were recognized for earning their ServSafe® Food Protection Manager Certification, a locally and national recognized certification which will make them more competitive candidates for restaurant and food service employment opportunities. The eight-hour program, administered by ORS Interactive of Falls Church, covered food safety regulations and concepts, including time and temperature control, preventing cross-contamination, cleaning and sanitizing, safe food preparation, receiving and storing food, and methods of thawing, cooking, cooling and reheating food. This was the first time the Alexandria Sheriff’s Office offered this type of training to its inmates.

Officials from ORS joined Sheriff Lawhorne in congratulating Tamer Castle, 35, Eric Elder, 33, Eric Hawkins, 41, Marcel Washington, 24, Rashaud Westbrook, 20, and another inmate who did not want his identity publicized. Some of these inmates are already working in the Detention Center cafeteria. The seventh ServSafe® graduate was released prior to the ceremony.

Below: Sheriff Dana Lawhorne and education coordinator Krista Sofonia congratulate (center, left to right) Richard White, Stephanie Schwab and Alvin Bell for passing their GED exams.

GED Graduates July 2012

Below: (l-r) Mauricio Carvalho and Joseph Weeks of ORS Interactive present Marcel Washington, Rashaud Westbrook, Eric Elder, Tamer Castle, and Eric Hawkins with their ServSafe® Certifications.

ORS staff with ServSafe graduates July 2012