Category Archives: Communication Tool

Rick Smith, CEO Discusses Advances In Inmate Communications

As the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Securus Technologies, Rick Smith frequently addresses the media about the latest innovations and advancements involving the future state of inmate telecommunications. In one such public media format, Smith spoke with [email protected] Fox34 is the local affiliate station of Fox Networks, based in Lubbock, Texas. The information provided in a press release discussed Securus Technologies role in making communications better in the long term for the incarcerated.

Rick Smith said this in the interview: “Just as communications have changed quite dramatically over the last ten (10) years for the general public, communications will positively influence what happens to the incarceration experience over the next ten (10) years.” In effect this means that Securus, as a nationwide leader of inmate communications is striving towards making greater improvements by providing a “centralized” multi-device platform. This is more than a prediction, it’s an active ongoing project.

In the past, inmates were provided one call initially and then their names added to an already long waiting list for “video visitation.” Securus is working on an advanced platform for linked communications. So, in the near future this will open up multiple forms of inmate connections; including “emails, text and video messages, and recorded voice messages;” all via secure telephone and Internet.

Securus Technologies main headquarters in located in Dallas; with additional regional offices in Atlanta, Georgia, and Allen and Carrollton, Texas. Rick Smith discussed how in the future inmates may purchase a device from Securus or bring their own device. He went on to emphasize that the technology isn’t “proprietary.” Meaning that Securus doesn’t have a patent on the technology and therefore isn’t involved and won’t be involved in the recording or monitoring of inmate telecommunications. This is the sole responsibility of the prison or jail facility. Read more on

Smith ended the interview with this comment, “We deliver all of this to some inmates today – with the objective of delivering these benefits to all in the future at lower rates. We have the technology, we have the people, we have the products – and we will use these to benefit everyone.”

Rick Smith began his tenure with Securus Technologies in June, 2008. In the past, he’s served as President, CEO, COO and CFO for Eschelon Telecom. Securus Technologies, is regarded as a leader in criminal justice technology, it was founded in 1998. Securus provides telecommunications and civil communication services for inmates in over 3,400 correctional facilities nationwide. In July 2015, Securus Technologies created a buzz in financial news, when they announced the acquisition of the electronic payment company, JPay Inc. The acquisition thrust Securus into another category, as a “fully licensed” electronic money transfer agent.

Visit Bloomberg to know more about Rick.

ClassDojo Connects Homes and Schools

Five years ago, Sam Chaudhary and Liam Don had a dream: To launch an ed-tech startup that made school classes more efficient and interactive. The basic premise was already there but research had to be done in order to pinpoint the main problems of education in public, private and charter schools. Educators were asked to open up about the obstacles they have to face every day. Their answers helped understand the situation and shape the project. The result of that effort was ClassDojo, an app that serves as a private social network to connect teachers, parents and students through photo, video and text.

Today, having been embraced by the teaching community, the startup has grown enormously. ClassDojo has transformed the teaching experience in two-thirds of all schools across the nation as well as 90% of school districts. Last summer the app was downloaded by over 500,000 people in 180 countries every day.

Essentially, ClassDojo is a communication platform between teachers, parents and students that fosters support while creating community-oriented interaction. It empowers users by providing tools that can help achieve ground-up change in the classroom. Using the app teachers can upload photos, videos, classwork and other materials to private groups that can be viewed and approved by parents. Simultaneously, parents can track the progress of their child, get announcements and even message teachers directly.

Perhaps, though, the biggest accomplishment of ClassDojo has been creating a positive culture with classrooms and schools that thrive on collaboration. By providing new routes of communication it allows home and school to integrate in a seamless manner. The app aspires not to replace teachers but to enable them to do their best work shaping the minds of students. Its tools were designed to enhance an educator’s personal teaching method while also keeping parents and students up-to-date about classwork and other relevant information.

This community-oriented philosophy has already proven itself effective. Without spending any money on marketing, Class Dojo has grown exclusively by word of mouth and personal recommendations. That is a tremendous feat that reflects how educators, parents and kids everywhere have embraced this startup. Chaudhary realizes the importance of incentivizing an open environment of support for each and every user. “We’re going to be the company that really listens to teachers, parents and kids,” he says, happily revealing ClassDojo’s real secret to success.

Learn more about ClassDojo: