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Posted on: November 17, 2020

Kenton County Jailer Terry Carl to Retire

Terry CarlKenton County Jailer Terry Carl advised Judge/Executive Kris Knochelmann today that he is retiring, effective December 31, 2020.

“Terry Carl took office in 1999, and there’s no doubt his work with the Detention Center over the last twenty years has been the most impactful of any Jailer in Kenton County history,” stated Judge/Executive Kris Knochelmann.

Mr. Carl inherited an antiquated jail upon taking office that was overcrowded, inefficient, and beyond the possibility of repair or renovation.  Using skills honed by years in the private sector and prior military service, Mr. Carl managed to successfully lead jail operations through those difficult years while the community wrestled with the location and financing of a new facility.

Finally, in November 2010, Kenton County opened a state-of-the-art, 620-bed inmate detention center benefiting from the design input of Mr. Carl. The design of the center, using innovative pod concepts, proved to be especially efficient and effective in meeting the detention needs of Kenton County.

The accomplishment of overseeing the transition to a new facility alone would have been historic, but Terry Carl was far from finished in helping his community.  As the opioid and heroin epidemic raged, he brought onto his staff a Director of Inmate Addiction Service and started an in-house Substance Abuse Program.  His goal was simply to reduce the demand on existing treatment facilities and end the revolving door at the jail for those addicted, and his program became a national model for doing so.  Mr. Carl continued these innovations to present day through new partnerships with the Life Learning Center, Transitions, Inc., and others, designed to help people get on track for successful lives outside detention.

“Terry Carl leaves a tremendous legacy at the Kenton County Detention Center.  From its very physical existence to the nationally recognized programming within it, there is no part that doesn’t have Terry Carl’s imprint on it.  Along the way, Terry was a tremendous partner with the Fiscal Court in every way.  Kenton County residents owe him a great debt of gratitude for his lengthy and impactful public service,” stated Judge/Executive Kris Knochelmann.

“I’ve always appreciated the opportunity to serve the citizens of Kenton County.  This community has been good to me and my family, and serving as Jailer was a way to give back.  I’ve been blessed to work with a great team at the Detention Center for more than two decades, and they are the unsung heroes.  In particular, my command staff, past and present, helped run the Detention Center smoothly and permitted our team to launch new initiatives to change people’s lives.  Most importantly, I want to thank my wife and family who supported me unconditionally during these years working to keep our community safe and to help change the lives of those who took a wrong turn,” added Kenton County Jailer Terry Carl.

By law, Judge/Executive Kris Knochelmann will appoint Kenton County Jailer Terry Carl’s successor, and he intends to do so by December 1st to ensure a smooth transition.    

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