Dan Beto


Dan Beto (1)Dan Beto, spent more than four decades working in the criminal justice system.  He earned his bachelor’s degree in sociology and his master’s degree in criminology at Sam Houston State University and worked as a juvenile probation officer in Harris County, a federal probation officer for the Southern District of Texas, director of Brazos County Community Supervision and Corrections Department, and director of the Judicial District Community Supervision and Corrections Department for Walker, Grimes and Madison Counties.  He was the founding executive director of the Correctional Management Institute of Texas at Sam Houston State University, a position he held from 1994 until 2005, when he retired.

A past president of the Texas Probation Association and the National Association of Probation Executives, Mr. Beto has been recognized in many criminal justice related arenas.  Among his accolades are the President’s Award presented by the Texas Probation Association for significant contributions to the probation profession; Correctional Administrator of the Year Award by the Texas Corrections Association; a Special Resolution by the Texas House of Representatives and a Proclamation by the Texas Senate for distinguished service to the Texas criminal justice system; Special Recognition Award by the Texas Youth Commission for supporting its volunteer program; Gold Medal for Achievement in Penitentiary Work by the Polish Prison Service; the Theodore Roosevelt Award by the Nassau County Probation Department in New York for correctional leadership; the Hall of Fame Award by the Texas Jail Association; and a Special Recognition Award by the National Association of Probation Executives for exemplary service to the community corrections profession (hereafter this award, presented annually, has known as the Dan Richard Beto Award).

While employed at Sam Houston State University, Mr. Beto served on numerous university and College of Criminal Justice committees, and he was instrumental in developing relations with a number of international criminal justice agencies and organizations.  Too, he has been a significant contributor to criminal justice literature.  

Mr. Beto created and helped fund the George J. Beto Endowed Scholarship in the College of Criminal Justice, and the year following his retirement he created and funded the Dan Richard Beto Endowed Scholarship in Correctional Leadership, also within the College of Criminal Justice.  In 2008 he and his wife, Donna, created and funded the Dan and Donna Beto Endowed Sociology Scholarship within the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and in 2010, they created and funded the Donna L. Beto Endowed Scholarship in Elementary Education in the College of Education.  In 2016, the Betos created and funded the Margaret A. Farnworth Endowed Graduate Scholarship in the College of Criminal Justice.

In retirement, Mr. Beto is involved in charitable endeavors and serves on the boards and committees of a number of civic and non-profit agencies and organizations.  He also does some international consulting.  He has been a member of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences Advisory Board since 2014.