CT victim advocate to return to Illinois

The state’s victim advocate, Garvin G. Ambrose, will resign next month, one year and five months after taking the job.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s office announced the move Thursday, noting that Ambrose “intends on relocating to his hometown of Chicago to accept a new professional opportunity.”

Ambrose had been the executive assistant state’s attorney in Illinois and legislative liaison for the Cook County state’s attorney before Malloy appointed him back in February.

Ambrose had replaced Michelle Cruz, an appointee of former Gov. M. Jodi Rell. Cruz had clashed with the Malloy administration over inmate early release policies.

“I want to thank Garvin for his service to the people of Connecticut,” Malloy said.  “Working with criminal justice professionals, crime victims and advocates, Garvin and his staff have been strong voices in pursuing the interests of victims in their efforts to seek justice.  I wish him well on whatever opportunity comes next.”

During his five-month tenure, Ambrose helped to implement the new, Governor’s Victims’ Rights Enforcement Advisory Commission

“While I am saddened by my personal decision to resign from this great office, I am confident that the successes of my wonderful staff and I over the past 15-months have once again made the Office of the Victim Advocate a relevant part of the state system on behalf of crime victims,” Ambrose said.  “It is my hope that the relationships that we repaired and gained, the policy and legislative victories that we attained, as well as the necessary rebranding of the Office of the Victim Advocate will continue in my absence.”

The seven-member Victim Advocate Advisory Committee will meet on Tuesday to begin the process of evaluating potential replacements, according to Michael Lawlor, Malloy’s chief criminal justice policy adviser and the group’s chairman. The governor must appoint a new advocate from the committee’s list of recommended finalists.

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