Mayor names Major Lisa Farmer as jail director

Mayor Linda Gorton today named Major Lisa Farmer, a Corrections professional who has worked her way up the ladder at Lexington’s Detention Center, as Director of Community Corrections.

“Lisa has an outstanding record, with a broad range of experience. She is well prepared to lead our detention center,” Mayor Linda Gorton said. “Corrections is an essential part of our community’s public safety. Our corrections officers do an outstanding job, and Lisa will strengthen that tradition of professionalism.” 

Farmer, who began working at the Detention Center in July 2001, is the first woman to lead Lexington’s detention center. She is also the first woman in the state of Kentucky to earn a Certified Jail Manager Certificate. She was the third person in the state to be awarded a certificate.

“I want to thank Mayor Gorton and Commissioner Ken Armstrong for their confidence in my ability to be Director of Community Corrections,” Farmer said. “I look forward to the next step of my career within Community Corrections.  I’m very excited for the future for Community Corrections, and the challenges that come with the position.”  

Farmer began in the jail as an officer, an entry level position. She has worked her way up through a variety positions, giving her a broad range of experience. Currently, she is the major in charge of operations.

Public Safety Commissioner Ken Armstrong said, “Lisa is a well-respected long term member of the Community Corrections Team, who has both the historical and operational knowledge needed to continue to make our facility one of the best in the state. Her style of leadership and her progressive thought process will be critical to the detention center staff, as they address both longstanding concerns, and new challenges.”

A native of Cincinnati, Farmer was raised in Somerset. She holds a bachelor’s degree in corrections and juvenile services, and a master’s degree in criminal justice from Eastern Kentucky University. 

The city received 26 applications for the director position from across the country. Farmer replaces Steve Haney, who retired.

Farmer will begin serving as interim director immediately. Her final appointment will be effective Nov. 23, pending Council approval.