Taxpayer tattoos: Minnesota offers up to $87K for new prison ‘tattoo supervisor’

In addition to the generous hourly wage, the job also appears to offer comprehensive benefits.

The Minnesota Correctional Facility in Stillwater, Minnesota. (Minnesota Department of Corrections)

A job board maintained by the state of Minnesota is offering a prison “tattoo supervisor” position that could pay up to $87,000 with benefits.

The posting seeks applicants who are currently licensed as tattoo technicians, have at least three years of experience, and “possess a strong, well-rounded portfolio.” The hiring agency is the Minnesota Department of Corrections, the state’s prison system, and the work is full-time out of Stillwater.

“In this position you will lead a pilot project for the Minnesota Department of Corrections (DOC) establishing a tattoo/body art studio within Minnesota correctional facilities,” according to the posting. “You will serve as the expert technical resource for other project and agency staff involved in the design and implementation of the body art pilot project so that a licensed body art studio is established and incarcerated men and women are trained and supervised in the art of tattooing.”

The salary range varies from $28.25 per hour at the low end and $41.63 per hour at the upper end. For a shift between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, that equates to a salary of $58,986 to $86,923 per year.

A screen capture of the job posting for Minnesota’s new tattoo supervisor.

“This position has direct contact with incarcerated individuals. This position will travel up to 15% of the time to Minnesota correctional facilities across the state,” the posting says, adding that the tattoo supervisor job is anticipated to last up to three years.

The supervisor will be responsible for developing “a program to provide technical information and supervision to incarcerated people interested in obtaining licensure as a tattoo technician,” among other responsibilities.

In addition to the generous hourly wage, the job also appears to offer comprehensive benefits — such as medical, dental, and life insurance, vacation, sick leave, and 11 paid holidays per year — given that the Department of Corrections is run by the state of Minnesota.

Preferred qualifications to become Minnesota’s first prison tattoo supervisor include but are not limited to: experience working in a prison setting, a high school diploma, and First Aid certification.


Evan Stambaugh

Evan Stambaugh is a freelance writer who had previously been a sports blogger. He has a BA in theology and an MA in philosophy.