Editor’s note: The California Department of Corrections issued a press release and photos in 1963 detailing the first awards ceremony for Southern California citizen volunteers. Walter Dunbar was the Director of Corrections at the time and his name appears at the top of the press release.

By James P. Alexander, Information Officer

Emmy-winning television start Robert Young, star of “Father Knows Best,” served as master of ceremonies for the first annual awards dinner for Southern California citizen volunteers in the adult correctional program. The ceremony was held at the California Rehabilitation Center, Corona.

State correctional leaders presented awards to citizen volunteer groups from throughout Southern California, to Editor Howard H. “Tim” Hays, Jr., of the Riverside Press-Enterprise for outstanding newspaper coverage of correctional programs and to producer-director Josef Leytes (aka Joseph Lejtes) for Four Star Television’s dramatic and realistic film on a state parole agent in action, “Apples Don’t Fall Far” (from The Dick Powell Show).