A leader in advocating for people involved in criminal justice, public health, and child welfare systems, Pam Rodriguez has served as TASC’s president and CEO since 2009. TASC is a statewide, nonprofit organization in Illinois that reaches more than 40,000 people annually, including in-depth services for nearly 14,000 adults and youth in justice, health, and child welfare systems. Pam also directs TASC’s Center for Health and Justice, which offers public policy and consulting services nationally and internationally.
Pam serves on the board of the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP) and the advisory board of the national Addiction Policy Forum. She was honored by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy in 2014 for her leadership in advancing system-wide justice interventions for people with substance use disorders. She was appointed in 2007 and serves as a practitioner member of the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, an independent organization in the U.S. executive branch that coordinates all federal juvenile delinquency prevention and detention programs.
In Illinois, Pam is active on numerous boards and task forces focused on diverting people away from the justice system, improving juvenile justice, and decreasing the disproportionate incarceration of people of color. She was appointed by the Governor in 2015 to serve on the recent Illinois State Commission on Criminal Justice and Sentencing Reform. Pam also serves on the oversight board of Redeploy Illinois, which supports community-based alternatives to incarceration for youth; the Illinois Juvenile Justice Leadership Council; the Illinois Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health and Criminal Justice, of which she is the vice chair of the advisory board; and the Women’s Justice Institute Task Force, which she co-chairs. In addition, she was appointed to serve on the Illinois Human Services Commission in 2013, and on the advisory council for the Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse (now the Division of Substance Use Prevention and Recovery, or SUPR).
Recognized as an expert in connecting research to clinical practice, Pam has co-authored several journal articles on healthcare, criminal justice, and juvenile justice, including articles for Community Oriented Correctional Health Services (2011), Reclaiming Children and Youth (2010), and Addiction Science and Clinical Practice (2009). She served as co-author and guest co-editor of a special issue on criminal justice reform for the Prison Journal (2011), published a chapter on case management in the Handbook of Evidence-Based Substance Abuse Treatment (2011), and has led the development of several reports for the Center for Health and Justice at TASC, including No Entry: A National Survey of Criminal Justice Diversion Programs and Initiatives (2014).
Pam earned her MA from the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration. She began her career at TASC in 1982 as a grant writer, and was promoted successively to direct nearly every aspect of the agency before becoming the agency’s president. In 2012, she was honored as an outstanding alumna of her undergraduate alma mater, Bemidji State University.