10/18/05 — New prison superintendent named

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New prison superintendent named

By Jack Stephens
Published in News on October 18, 2005 1:48 PM

Robert Hines has come home. The Rosewood resident is the new superintendent of Wayne Correctional Center on Stevens Mill Road.

Hines, who has worked 28 years in the prison system, never really left the area. For the past four years, he was superintendent at Pamlico Correctional Institution, but he commuted 90 minutes each way to and from Bayboro.

Robert Hines

Robert Hines

"I was born and raised in a house across the street" from Wayne Correctional, Hines said. "I played here as child before there was a prison."

So, his new job is a homecoming of sorts, he said.

"I never envisioned being superintendent at the place where I grew up," Hines said. "When I started, I thought I would spend my whole career in Greene County. I never envisioned working in Wayne County at all."

Hines, 50, said he always had an interest in the prison system. A former superintendent lived next door. Hines's brother, Herbert, retired five years ago as a corrections captain at Neuse Correctional Institution, which is across the street from Wayne Correctional.

"It's something I've always wanted to do," Hines said.

Even Hines's wife, Mary, works in the prison system. For the last six years, she has been a case analyst at Neuse Correctional after having worked at the now-closed Goldsboro Correctional Institution and Johnston Correctional Institution.

Hines was notified of the promotion Sept. 20, when he met Boyd Bennett, the director of prisons, in Raleigh. He said he was happy at the promotion and ready to come home. He succeeded Carla Okonek Smith, who was named superintendent at Eastern Correctional Institution in Maury.

A graduate of Rosewood High School and Wayne Community College, Hines began his career in 1978 at Greene Correctional Center in Maury. He was promoted to sergeant in 1981 and to lieutenant in 1987, when he was transferred to Eastern Correctional Institution.

Hines was promoted in 1990 to captain, and a year later he was transferred back to Greene Correctional as assistant superintendent of custody. He was transferred to Wayne in 1996 as superintendent of custody before being promoted in 2001 to superintendent at Pamlico.

Wayne Correctional, a medium-security prison, has 428 beds. Last week, it housed 420 inmates, and it has 156 staffers. It has the largest substance abuse treatment program in the state prison system. The prison is about twice as large as Pamlico.

Now that he is working at home, he says he does not plan to go anywhere else.

When he retires, Hines says he wants to officiate sports full-time. For 15 years, he has worked high school, middle school, Pop Warner and peewee football games across eastern North Carolina. Last week, he refereed high school games at Jacksonville, Wallace and Charles B. Aycock.

"It's fun, I enjoy it," he said.

He also called basketball and baseball games until he worked in Pamlico County.

Hines and his wife have two sons -- Jaren, 16, a junior at Rosewood High School, and Tevin, 10, a fifth-grader at Rosewood Elementary.