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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Florida's new prisons chief gets down to business



Ken Tucker is the fifth leader of the Florida prison system in the past five years.

Tucker, 57, a native of Bunnell, is a career law enforcement officer who spent six years as a police officer in Daytona Beach, followed by 28 years at the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. He started as an undercover FDLE agent investigating drug smuggling cases in Key West and rose to the position of deputy commissioner.

By his own admission, he doesn't know a lot about corrections.

He was asked to take the job on Aug. 24, just hours before Gov. Rick Scott and his chief of staff forced Ed Buss to resign after only six months on the job.

He quickly told them two things: He had little knowledge of corrections, and he has already set his retirement date for March 31, 2013. So while Tucker said he would offer strong leadership, it wouldn't be for very long.

Tucker recently conducted his first interview as corrections secretary, with the Times/Herald. Here's an edited version of that conversation.

[Last modified: Friday, November 25, 2011 2:54pm]


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