Paul Baker was an Associate Warden beloved by everyone and is remembered as a man who treated everybody he met with dignity and respect. He passed away peacefully on the morning of June 20 at the age of 44.
On June 29, a celebration of life was held in Marin County.
“Paul’s contribution to this prison, and to CDCR as a trainer in the academy, was tremendous,” Warden Ron Davis said. “The people he touched will have a lasting impression, whether they are just beginning their careers or they have many years of service.
“Paul was the kind of person who, even in the most chaotic times, kept an even keel, stayed in control, operated with integrity and in a loving way with all his subordinates,” Warden Davis added. “That is an important legacy for staff to see.”
Chief Deputy Warden (A), Patrick Covello, said, “Paul was always reliable and a hard worker. He took pride and ownership in his work and was a key player in the management team. He will truly be missed by everyone here at San Quentin.”
Soon after Baker passed, Associate Warden of Health Care Services, Steve Allbritton, walked the prison grounds talking to staff in remembrance.
“Not only was he a great man, he made it so easy for people to like him,” Allbritton said. “He was always so helpful and understanding to staff. And he applied those same principles to the inmates who also had good things to say about him.”
Captain Virdell Larkins added, “He was always smiling and cheerful, very respectful and treated everyone fairly. There were lots of happy memories.”
Correctional Officer, John Wilkerson said, “Associate Warden Baker was a humble man. He was the kind of person who would see you while walking with other administrators and would come over to you and ask how you’re doing.”
Wilkerson recalled how Baker would “literately lean in, make eye contact, shake hands, and give comfort.”
Wilkerson said even if your day was already going well, Baker would make it better. “Good people leave too soon.”
AW Baker, an avid baseball fan, supported the prison’s baseball program, inmate coaches Terry Burton and John Parratt noted.
“Associate Warden Baker should be remembered as a person with a caring heart,” said Parratt.
Burton added, “He should be remembered as a human being who was approachable and where inmates could get a straight answer to anything asked. He wouldn’t beat around the bush. He was a good person and friendly.”
Men’s Advisory Council Chairman, Darryl Hill, said, “Associate Warden Baker was one who listened to the concerns of the general population, and went to great lengths, within reason, to solve them. He never seemed to have a bad day, and he always took the time to listen to our concerns. He stayed cheerful and treated each of us with respect.” Hill continued, “He should be remembered as a man with integrity, decency, understanding and a man of God. He will be missed greatly.”
Baker began his career with CDCR on Jan. 6, 1996, at California State Prison, Solano. In 2005, while at CSP-Solano, Baker was promoted to Sergeant. Baker transferred to Richard A. McGee Correctional Training Facility in 2006. While at Folsom State Prison, he was promoted to Lieutenant in 2009. He transferred to San Quentin in 2012 and was promoted to Captain in 2014. Earlier this year, Baker was promoted to Associate Warden.