Mark Strong resigned Friday as CEO of the Special Commitment Center after running the treatment facility for sex offenders on McNeil Island for more than two years.
The Special Commitment Center is home to more than 200 sexually violent predators who were civilly committed after completing their prison sentences because they are considered likely to reoffend.
“He just decided to move on,” said spokesman Chris Wright of the Department of Social and Health Services, which oversees the facility. “It’s not a Western State situation or anything. It seemed to be kind of a mutual decision.”
Wright was referring to two inmates breaking out of Western State Hospital in Lakewood earlier this month and the firing of the hospital’s chief executive, Ron Adler. That facility is also overseen by DSHS.
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Bill Van Hook, a former assistant attorney general responsible for SCC litigation from 2007 to 2015, came out of retirement to take over as the center’s CEO.
The move is permanent, Wright said.
A DSHS news release announcing Strong’s departure states that the SCC’s primary office will move from Steilacoom to McNeil Island in the future.