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(Sacramento)-- Attorney General Bill Lockyer today announced the appointments of Kathy Jett as Director of the Crime and Violence Prevention Center and Nina Salarno as Director of the newly created Office of Victims' Services in the California Department of Justice.
"California has been a leader for the country in the development of tough sentencing laws like 3-Strikes and mandatory life-terms for illegal use of guns," Lockyer said. "But in order to improve public safety we need to pay as much attention to prevention as we have to detention. Kathy Jett and Nina Salarno will help make California a leader in the fight to prevent more crimes and improve services to victims."
As director of the Crime and Violence Prevention Center (CVPC), Jett will oversee a staff of 27 and be responsible for developing effective crime prevention and education strategies for law enforcement and the public. She brings to the job more than 20 years of experience as a passionate advocate and recognized leader in crime and violence prevention, the prevention of drug and alcohol abuse and developing improved health care services for women.
Since 1997, Jett has served as Chief of the Office of Women's Health in the California Department of Health Services. She earlier was a Crime Prevention Adviser within the Attorney General's CVPC and managed the state's drug prevention services program within the California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs.
Jett has developed and implemented many successful prevention programs throughout her career. During her previous tenure with the CVPC, she established the Attorney General's Gang Prevention Program, developed the state's first community-based policing publication and implemented the Attorney General's Drug-Free Zones Program. She also developed a major statewide violence prevention initiative that resulted in a number of local initiatives to prevent youth violence outlined in her report, Violence Prevention: A Vision of Hope. As Chief for the Office of Women's Health, Jett advised the governor on women's health issues and the improvements needed in comprehensive health care services for women and girls in California.
"It is an honor to be appointed to lead Attorney General Lockyer's Crime and Violence Prevention Center," said Jett. "Prevention is fighting crime before it happens. Through crime prevention, we can do more to protect children from violence, the elderly from financial or physical abuse, and families from the trauma of losing a loved one. This new job will allow us to help improve the quality of life for Californians through the prevention and reduction of crime."
Nina Salarno of Sacramento brings a wealth of experience as a prosecutor and special understanding to the Office of Victims' Services, which was created by Attorney General Lockyer to coordinate the department's assistance and outreach programs for victims of crime.
Salarno has served as a deputy district attorney for the past seven years, the last three in Sacramento. As a deputy district attorney, Salarno has prosecuted dozens of 2nd and 3rd Strike cases as well as domestic violence, child sexual assault, narcotics and gang crimes. In 1979, Salarno's oldest sister, Catina, was murdered on her first day at college by an estranged boyfriend who had threatened and harassed her for months. Since that time, Salarno and her mother, Harriet, have been leaders in the area of improving services and providing support for crime victims throughout California and the country. Salarno is the co-founder of Crime Victims United, one of the state's largest crime victims advocacy organizations.
As director of the Office of Victims' Services, Salarno will be responsible for advising the Attorney General on issues affecting crime victims, improving existing and managing new programs to benefit victims, and coordinating services between public and private programs.
"Being the first director of the Office of Victims' Services is an honor and provides the perfect opportunity to help victims of crime," Salarno said. "I look forward to working closely with Attorney General Lockyer to strengthen the Department of Justice and provide the best possible services to comfort crime victims and help prevent citizens from being crime victims in the future."
The appointment of Jett is effective May 1, 1999 and the appointment of Salarno is effective May 17, 1999.