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August 18, 2006


The Archdiocese of Philadelphia announces the hiring of Mr. Sean R. Ryan, a recently retired member of the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole who served under three governors. The Archdiocese hired Mr. Ryan to evaluate current programs and processes involving priests against whom the Archdiocese has substantiated allegations of sexual abuse and those who have allegations pending against them.

This is another measure taken by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to strengthen its response to cases of sexual abuse. In January 2006, Cardinal Justin Rigali, Archbishop of Philadelphia, announced the hiring of Ms. Mary Achilles as Victims' Advocate for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Ms. Achilles, who previously served as the first-ever Victim Advocate for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, said, "I worked with Sean for ten years and respect his knowledge, expertise and leadership in the treatment and management of sex offenders. His extensive experience in the Pennsylvania Criminal Justice System provides another step in the Archdiocesan efforts to draw upon the expertise in the secular community."

In his position as a member of the state Board of Probation and Parole, Mr. Ryan was responsible for interviewing thousands of offenders each year and making decisions on their parole release or revocation. Mr. Ryan was also influential in implementing the new Interstate Compact for the Supervision of Adult Offenders which provides federal oversight to states in the transfer of offenders across state lines. Mr. Ryan was recently recognized by the PA Providers' Association because of his work with treatment providers. He is also the Legislative Chairman of the American Probation and Parole Association. As a Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole member Mr. Ryan interviewed State-sentenced offenders for parole consideration and was the Hearing Officer for parole revocation hearings.

Prior to joining the PA Board of Probation and Parole in 1995, Mr. Ryan worked for nineteen years in the Bucks County Adult Probation and Parole Department. From 1987 to 1995 he served as Deputy Chief of Adult Probation where he developed a sex-offender supervision program. During this time, he also served as an Adjunct Faculty member at the Temple University School of Criminal Justice in Ambler where he taught courses on Community Based Correction among other Criminal Justice offerings. From 1978 to 1987, Mr. Ryan was a Supervisor of Probation and Parole Services. He joined the Bucks County Adult Probation and Parole Department in 1976 as a Probation and Parole Officer.

Mr. Ryan received a Bachelor of Science degree in Social Psychology from Juniata College in 1975 and a Master of Education degree in Social Restoration from Lehigh University in 1976.


Donna Farrell
Director of Communications

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