Adult Probation

Lancaster County Courthouse


Empowering Change. Evolving Through Evidence-Based Practices. Serving Our Community.


The mission of Adult Probation and Parole Services is to effect pro-social behavioral change in the individuals we supervise in order to aid in their rehabilitation, enhance their quality of life, and promote community safety.


In order to advance our mission, Adult Probation and Parole Services strives to:

  • Utilize evidence based practices with the individuals under our supervision to reduce recidivism and provide opportunities to make positive changes.
  • Identify and address criminogenic needs.
  • Refer individuals to community-based interventions that science has proven to be effective in reducing recidivism.
  • Uphold the order of the court.
  • Utilize agency resources in the most effective and efficient manner.
  • Encourage positive behavioral change through intrinsic motivation by the use of positive reinforcement and restorative sanctions.

Adult Probation and Parole Services believes in:
  • Regarding our staff as our most valuable resource.
  • Treating all people with dignity and respect.
  • Holding ourselves to the highest level of professional and ethical standards.
  • Fostering relationships with community resources to aid individuals and their families in meeting their basic and criminogenic needs.
  • Preserving the rights of victims and the need for restoration by holding individuals under our charge accountable to the order of the court.
  • Evaluating and adjusting program services to best reflect our values and achieve our mission.


Adult Probation and Parole has had a long history in Lancaster County. By order of President Judge Benjamin Atlee of the Lancaster Court of Common Pleas, the Adult Probation Department was created in 1933. President Judge Atlee appointed Edgar R. Barnes, Mary R. Bowman, MD., and Beatrice Pollack as the first probation officers in Lancaster County. At the time, the Adult Probation Department supervised all probation cases, including adult, juvenile and domestic relations.

In 1945, Barnes was appointed chief probation officer and served as such until 1961 when he retired. E. Jane Crowell succeeded Barnes as chief probation officer until 1977 when President Judge W. Hensel Brown ordered that the adult and juvenile components be separated. Ms. Crowell was named Chief Adult Probation Officer and served as such until 1979 when she retired and James Turnbull was named as her successor. 

In 2000, the adult probation and parole system in Lancaster County underwent significant structural changes under the direction of the Honorable Michael A. Georgelis, President Judge. The judicial directive initiated the unification of the existing four adult probation and parole programs.

In 2012, the agency underwent a department wide restructure by creating two offices, the Office of Supervision Services and the Office of Administrative Services in an effort to centralize and utilize agency resources more effectively. The Director of Adult Probation and Parole Services reports to the District Court Administrator. The current Director of Adult Probation and Parole Services is Mark J. Wilson.