BJA 2023 Spotlight, Michigan

Tanisha Black serves as a Leadership and Professional Development Training Specialist at the Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC.) She is a twenty-two-year veteran of the agency. Tanisha received her bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Eastern Michigan University and her master’s from Northwood University in Business Administration. As a lifelong learner, she is currently attending Grand Canyon University studying Organizational Leadership and Development.

Today’s challenges in corrections often revolve around retention and recruitment. MDOC experienced staff shortages due to illness, an influx of retirements, and pandemic-related fears. Tanisha gives kudos to the agency leadership for modeling exceptional and courageous leadership for others to follow. Tanisha did her part and dove into learning all she could about virtual training platforms and revising training to fit this new model for maximum effectiveness. And it has paid off, as evidenced by the positive feedback from staff and leadership.

Tanisha meets staff where they are, blends topics with core adult learning theory to capture participants’ attention and engagement, adds topics based on feedback, and teaches through various lenses and perspectives.

When unexpected shifts have to occur, the best way to be prepared is to stay current and relevant. Tanisha challenges everyone to continue their education to be able to pivot to keep the agency learning and growing.

We congratulate Tanisha Black and MDOC on their successful innovative training initiatives to better prepare and support staff long-term.