Gov. Phil Murphy has named Victoria Kuhn, the current chief of staff at the Department of Corrections, to serve as acting commissioner.
She will replace Marcus Hicks, who announced his resignation this morning after an independent investigation into allegations of beatings and sexual assaults at the Edna Mahan Correctional Facility for Women created a disturbing picture of his leadership.
Some legislators have called on Murphy to conduct a national search for a permanent replacement, suggesting that reform must come from someone who has not been involved in the issues that led to the dysfunction of the prison system.
Kuhn is a former Assistant Cumberland County Prosecutor who later worked as a Deputy Attorney General’s office and as director of New Jersey’s Equal Employment Division. Later, she served as director of the Office of Employee Relations.
Just five days before Murphy took office, Hicks named Kuhn to serve as deputy chief of staff.
She began her career in corrections while in high school when she worked part-time at the Cumberland County Jail. She was part of a Prison Reform Clinic while attended Seton Hall University Law School.