P.O. Box 945 (inmates)
P.O. Box 307 (staff)
286 Woodland Drive
Marienville, PA 16239
Superintendent: Michael Overmyer
Deputy Superintendent for Centralized Services: John Sawtelle
Deputy Superintendent for Facilities Management: Derek Oberlander
Business Manager: Kathleen Zeigler
Superintendent's Assistant: Lisa Reeher
The PA Department of Corrections’ search for a new correctional facility location caught the attention of Forest County Commissioners in 1998. At that time the area was in need of economic improvement due to the shut-down of a major employer; the Commissioners decided a state-run corrections facility would be a boost to the area and they began their quest to bring a DOC facility to Marienville. Seven years, and numerous community meetings later, SCI Forest became a reality overcoming obstacles including, delays and a change in the facility design. SCI Forest is comprised of a 64-acre compound with 26 buildings including 11 housing units, three inmate dining halls, hospital, education and religious complex, warehouse, utility plant and administration building. In addition there are two large recreational yards and individual recreation areas for each housing unit. The first inmates arrived on October 28, 2004.
SCI Forest was accredited by the American Correctional Association in 2006 and has successfully achieved reaccreditation every 3 years since that time.
Number of Acres Inside Perimeter: 57
Number of Acres Outside Perimeter: 202
Number of Operational Structures (inside and outside of perimeter): 29
Number of Housing Units: 11
Housing units consist of both cells and dormitory-style housing.
Special Features: One Special Needs Unit
Inmate Population: Click HERE
for the current population report
Inmate Average Age: 36
Total Number of Full-Time Employees: 666
Academic and Vocational Education:
• Academic Education through GED level
• Vocational Education: Building Custodial Maintenance; Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning; Business Practices; Auto Technology; Barber School; Masonry; Computer Aided Drafting; Electricity; Construction Building Trades
• Sex Offender Moderate-High Intensity
• Offender Low Intensity
• Special Needs Sex Offender Booster Program
• Pre-Vocational Skills Class
• MoneySmart Program
Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD)
• Therapeutic Community
• Parole Violator
• Outpatient Therapy Group
• Dual Diagnosis
• AA/NA/SOS Support Meetings
• Thinking for a Change
• Act 143 Victim Awareness
• Violence Prevention
• Batterer’s Intervention
Health Care Programs
• Medication Education
Hepatitis C Treatment Education
Our dog program, Pups Assisting Wounded Soldiers (PAWS), has been operating for over a year. Dogs from the Elk County Humane Society are socialized and trained by inmates. The dogs spend 12 weeks at Forest learning basic obedience, walking on a loose leash and coming when called.
While here, the dogs visit the Special Needs Unit (SNU) and the Psychology Department. In these venues, the dogs are used as an adjunct to psychotherapy. Additionally, dogs that show promise for specialized work will be screened by Wags 4 Warriors, an organization that supplies dogs to veterans with traumatic brain injuries (TBI’s) and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Community Work Program:
Community Work Program assists local non-profit organizations. They also participate in the PennDOT Agility Program where CWP inmates provide services such as mowing and painting at PennDOT facilities and PennDOT provides surface treatment to our parking lots and other paved areas. This exchange of services was valued at about $23,500.00 in 2012.