National Sheriffs’ Association announces Verizon Frontline as founding sponsor of I.G.N.I.T.E.

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Kansas City, MO – The National Sheriffs’ Association announced today that Verizon Frontline would be the founding sponsor of its I.G.N.I.T.E. (Inmate Growth Naturally and Intentionally Through Education) program, a nation-wide jail initiative that prepares inmates for release and helps make jails safer.

The program started in Genesee County, Mich., under the leadership of Sheriff Chris Swanson. Inmates enrolled in I.G.N.I.T.E. spend two hours a day, five days a week in class.  They can access courses to earn credits toward a GED, take part in virtual reality to learn a skilled trade job, or take enrichment courses in everything from American Sign Language to financial literacy, which will help them hone their interests and work toward employment after graduation.

Since its public launch, the program has enrolled more than a thousand students who have completed more than 200,000 classroom hours, logged 19,000 hours of coursework and participated in more than 700 standardized tests.

“It is no surprise that Verizon Frontline is our Founding Sponsor considering their years long commitment to NSA, law enforcement and public safety,” said NSA Executive Director Jonathan Thompson. He continued, “We are so proud and grateful to have them as a partner.”

“For more than 30 years, Verizon Frontline has worked side-by-side with first responders to ensure they have the mission-critical communications capabilities they need to achieve their mission,” said Maggie Hallbach, senior vice president of Verizon Public Sector, “but our partnership with public safety agencies extends beyond providing this vital service. Our work with the National Sheriffs’ Association on I.G.N.I.T.E. is the latest demonstration of our deep and lasting commitment to our public safety partners.”

“Big thanks and appreciation to Verizon Frontline for supporting this important program. With their help, we will meet our goal of eliminating generational incarceration through education, by restoring value, hope, and purpose to those in our nation’s jails,” said Sheriff Chris Swanson.

NSA I.G.N.I.T.E. has also launched in Hennepin County, Minn., Ingham County, Mich., Mecklenburg County, N.C.. and in the coming months will expand to include:

  • Cass County, N.D.
  • Roanoke City, Va.
  • Collin County, Texas

Verizon Frontline is the advanced network and technology built for first responders – developed over nearly three decades of partnership with public safety officials and agencies on the front lines – to meet their unique and evolving needs.

I.G.N.I.T.E. is a mechanism for breaking the trend of generational incarceration throughout the country, while establishing education and rehabilitation as two main points of focus for the jail. 

About The National Sherriff’s Association:
The National Sheriffs’ Association is one of the largest non-profit associations of law enforcement professionals in the United States, representing more than 3,000 elected sheriffs across the nation, and with a total membership of approximately 14,000 individuals. NSA is dedicated to raising the level of professionalism among sheriffs, their deputies, and others in the field of law enforcement, public safety, and criminal justice. Throughout its eighty-one-year history, NSA has also served as an information resource for all law enforcement, as well as local, state, and federal government agencies.