Board of Pardons and paroles

The Board of Pardons and Paroles is a nine member appointed board charged with the authority to make decisions of parole, the revocation of parole, and parole policy and procedure. Three of the board members are appointed by the Governor of South Dakota, three are appointed by Attorney General, and the remaining three are appointed by the South Dakota Supreme Court. One of the appointees by each appointing authority must be an attorney. Each member of the board must be a resident of South Dakota and be appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate.

Board members are appointed for terms of four years. Members are eligible for reappointment. Terms expire on the third Monday in January of the fourth year after appointment. Each member serves until his successor takes office as provided by law. In case of a vacancy, the appointing power shall make an interim appointment to expire at the end of the next legislative session.

The Board of Pardons and Paroles is administered under the jurisdiction and direction of the Department of Corrections but retains quasi-judicial, quasi-legislative, advisory and other non-administrative functions independent of the Department of Corrections.

The Board is required by state statute to meet at least once every three months in a public forum, and during the first meeting of each year, they select the chairperson for the Board. Individual members may be selected to act as a hearing officer and provide recommendations to the Board. Panels of two or more members may also act as a hearing board and they have full authority in decisions of parole. No recommendation for the commutation of a sentence or for a pardon other than an exceptional pardon may be made by less than the majority vote of all members of the Board of Pardons and Paroles. Hearings may also be conducted via teleconference.

Each member of the board of pardons and paroles shall receive compensation and expense reimbursement for attending meetings or performing duties of the board. Amounts are set by SDCL 4-7-10.4.

Inmates up for parole are notified of the results of parole hearings by the Monday evening following their hearing. Parole hearing results are not released until the inmate is notified.

The Executive Director of the Board of Pardons and Paroles is appointed by the Secretary of the Department of Corrections.

The current members of the Board of Pardons and Paroles are:

  • Thomas Cihak, Yankton Chair
  • Sara Burnette, Sioux Falls Vice-Chair
  • Jerome Lammers, Madison
  • Michael McGreevy, Sioux Falls
  • Mark Marshall, Sioux Falls
  • Dennis Kaemingk, Mitchell
  • Debra Flute, Sisseton

The Executive Director's Office is located at the South Dakota State Penitentiary
1600 North Drive PO Box 5911 Sioux Falls, SD 57117-5911
Phone (605) 367-5040 Fax (605) 367-5115

2008 Parole Board Hearing Schedule

Parole Monthly Agenda November 2008 Schedule

In 2001, the state Legislature passed a law allowing South Dakota to participate in a revised Interstate Compact between participating states. For more information on the Interstate Compact program, click on the link in the side menu above.