Benjamin Ford Promoted

FORSYTH, Ga. – Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) Commissioner Tyrone Oliver announced the promotion of Benjamin Ford, Deputy Director of Field Operations, to Director of Field Operations effective July 1, 2024, upon the retirement of current Director Stan Shepard. Ford will be responsible for overseeing daily operations of all state facilities.

“Ben’s tenure with GDC spans more than 30 years, and during his entire career, he has proven his level of commitment and dedication to our mission of the safe and secure operations of our facilities,” said Commissioner Tyrone Oliver.  “His vast correctional knowledge and his innate leadership skills gives us confidence in his ability to succeed in his new role.”

Ford began his career with the GDC as a Correctional Officer at Lee State Prison (SP) in 1985. In 1992, he was promoted to Sergeant at the Albany Transitional Center (TC), followed by a reassignment to Sergeant at Autry SP in 1994. Ford was promoted to Lieutenant at Calhoun SP in 1995 and to Chief of Security later that year at Albany TC. In 1999, he was promoted to Superintendent at the Thomasville Diversion Center. The following year he was selected to start-up Bainbridge Probation Substance Abuse Treatment Center. In 2003, he was activated for Operation Iraqi Freedom with the United States Army and served until May 2014, at which time he returned to GDC to serve as the Superintendent / Correction Special Assistant to the Warden at Calhoun SP. In 2015, Benjamin was reassigned to Correction Special Assistant to the Warden at Autry SP.

Ford was promoted to Warden at Burruss Correctional Training Center in 2015 and in 2016, was reassigned to Calhoun SP as the Warden. He was promoted to Warden at Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Prison in 2018, followed by a promotion to Southwest Regional Director in 2022. In 2023, he was promoted to Deputy Director of Field Operations, where he currently serves.

Ford holds a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and a master’s degree in management and leadership. He is also a graduate of the United States Army Sergeant Major Academy and completed Emergency Management Training.

He has completed the following Departmental training:  Basic Correctional Officer Training, Basic Management Training, Corrections Leadership Institute, Advanced Management Training, Georgia Management and Leadership, and Wardens and Chief Pre-Command Course.


About the Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC)

The Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) has one of the largest prison systems in the U.S. and is responsible for supervising approximately 50,000 state prisoners. It is the largest law enforcement agency in the state with approximately 9,000 employees. For more information on the GDC, call 478-992-5247 or visit


Director, Communications Joan Heath


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