By Daniel Silliman
A Jonesboro woman has been named chief parole officer at the Parole Reporting Center in Northwest Atlanta.
Felicia Holloway joined the Parole Board as an officer in 2001, but said she always knew she wanted to rise to the top.
Her boss, Metro Region Director Joje Wilson-Gibbs, describes her as "motivated and highly qualified." Holloway describes herself as ambitious, dedicated and highly invested in her work on the treatment of substance abuse and unemployment.
An Atlanta native, she graduated from Clark Atlanta University in 1989, with a degree in business administration and management. She spent 12 years working for the Department of Corrections, and then moved to the Parole Board.
"I was attracted to the training that they offered and the upward mobility," she said.
That training, combined with her ambition, pushed her upward, and in 2005, Holloway was promoted to the assistant chief position.
She took on the reporting center's day-to-day operations, and was directly involved in the hiring process, budgeting and staff management.
During that time -- about 10 years ago -- Holloway moved south to Clayton County, making her home in Jonesboro.
Holloway attributes her continued rise and increasing responsibility to her ability to communicate and ability to show the staff that she was passionate about them and about the work, and her ability to show her commitment to the parolees.
"I'm really invested, to see that they complete parole and complete probation successfully," she said.
As chief, Holloway will oversee the Parole Reporting Center, and the operation of the center's employment placement program, education, cognitive restructuring and substance-abuse program.
The biggest challenge she expects to face is dealing with substance-abuse issues, she said.
"We have to address those issues to get the parolees back on track," Holloway said. "We understand that they are addicted to drugs and they're going to relapse, but we have things in place to help, with our counselors here, to address those issues. And if they need a higher level of treatment we can refer them to help with outside agencies."