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New warden takes over at East Mississippi

By By William F. West / community editor
Oct. 16, 2002
A warden with more than 20 years of federal prison experience is now in charge of the East Mississippi Correctional Facility one of four privately-run prisons that houses state inmates.
Before coming to the East Mississippi prison, Lawrence Greer had worked in the federal prison system, the District of Columbia's prison system and a Wackenhut Corp. prison in South Florida.
Wackenhut operates East Mississippi, a 750-bed medium custody prison that opened in April 1999 off U.S. 80 at Lost Gap. The company also operates Marshall County Correctional Facility, a 1,000-bed medium custody prison.
Two vice presidents with Florida-based Wackenhut said Tuesday that they are pleased Greer agreed to take command of the prison.
Cloid Shuler, vice president of the eastern regional office, said that Greer will do an outstanding job. Amber Martin, vice president of contract compliance, agreed.
New job
Greer took over Oct. 7, replacing Aaron Jagers, who left for Holly Springs in North Mississippi to become warden of the company's Marshall County prison.
Shuler said Wackenhut likes to rotate its wardens throughout the company's system.
Greer's agreement to run the East Mississippi Correctional Facility also puts him in the home area of his wife, Mildred.
She is originally from Cuba, Ala., and her family still has a house there. Greer will live in the Cuba house during the week.
Mildred has a job as a unit manager at the federal prison at Yazoo City and commutes to a residence in Madison, where the couple will stay on weekends. They have four grown children.
Greer is a native of the southern Illinois town of Carbondale. He spent four years in the Marines.
He spent 22 1/2 years with the U.S. Bureau of Prisons, working at many prisons including the one at Marion, Ill., before he was promoted to warden at one in Tallahassee.
Recent experience
Greer joined the District of Columbia's corrections department and was a warden over its prison at Lorton, Va., before being named a deputy director of operations with the agency.
His most recent job was warden at Wackenhut's prison in South Bay, Fla., northwest of Miami. There, he oversaw about a 1,300-inmate operation.
At the East Mississippi prison, Greer is overseeing 706 inmates and 203 staffers.
Greer said he likes to talk with inmates and staffers.
He said the East Mississippi prison is unlike most in the nation because it is designed to house inmates with mental illnesses.
The Greer file:
Name: Lawrence Greer.
Occupation: Warden, East Mississippi Correctional Facility.
Experience: 221/2 years with the U.S. Bureau of Prisons; also worked for the District of Columbia's corrections department; was warden at Wackenhut Corp.'s prison in South Bay, Fla.
Family: Wife, Mildred, and four grown children.