Leann Bertsch was appointed Director of the North Dakota Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation by Governor Doug Burgum in December 2016. Bertsch has served as the department’s director since July 2005. She served as Commissioner of the North Dakota Department of Labor from September 2004 through June 2005.
Prior to entering state government, Bertsch was an Assistant State’s Attorney for Burleigh County from August 1996 through August 2004. From 1992 through 1996, she worked as an attorney for Legal Assistance of North Dakota. Bertsch also served 21 years in the North Dakota National Guard, retiring as a Major in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps in 2007.
As Corrections Director, Bertsch has worked to implement evidence-based practices throughout the North Dakota corrections system, focusing resources on long-term offender behavior change. Bertsch serves as President of the Association of State Correctional Administrators (ASCA). In December 2016, the ASCA honored Bertsch with the Tom Clements Innovation Award, which was established to recognize an ASCA member who exemplifies the virtues of vision and innovation in the corrections profession.
Bertsch earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of North Dakota School of Law and a Bachelor of Science degree from North Dakota State University.
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