I’ve been a Bannock County deputy for almost 31 years: my entire law enforcement career has been dedicated to the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office. I’ve always known and believed this industry is service- and people-oriented.
One of my goals for the Sheriff’s Office has been to raise the quality of service to the citizens and visitors of our community. This is a responsibility that lands directly in my purview. The actions and conduct (both good and bad) of the 150 employees at the Sheriff’s Office will always fall on me for accountability, and I am happy to shoulder that responsibility.
What I’ve learned in the past two and half years as the sheriff is this: there are not enough hours in the day for a sheriff to personally ensure each employee conducts themselves in a manner conducive to my expectations or the expectations of the community. The most effective way to maintain accountability among our team members is to disperse the responsibility amongst our agency’s leadership. In order to accomplish this, it starts with me as head of the office appointing the right chief deputy who isn’t a “yes” person but understands and appreciates the value of treating people right, with respect and professionalism in ALL circumstances.
This belief is then taught and emulated to our next level of supervision: Captains. The process is continued throughout the chain of command: lieutenants, sergeants, corporals, leads, and deputies. The important part is that we continually talk about this expectation in supervisor meetings, staff meetings, shift meetings, and administrative meetings. This creates an environment where each captain is accountable for the deputies under their command.
The Chief deputy and I can concentrate on meeting with the captains on a daily basis and reinforce the importance of treating the community and our own people with respect and professionalism in all circumstances. I am very fortunate to have the current four captains in place who believe in this concept, strive to emulate it every day, and breathe this belief within the team they are in charge of, and toward every citizen they come in contact with.
We are not perfect every day, but if we can identify the occurrences in which we have not emulated this concept and rectify it, then we’ve become better in our service efforts. I believe the ability to treat people with respect and professionalism is a conscious choice we can make the minute our feet hit the ground first thing in the morning. It’s well known by our team at the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office that if you consciously decide you’re going to have a bad attitude or are unable to treat people with respect and professionalism, the best decision you can make is to stay home.
I thoroughly enjoy serving my community and earning their respect for law enforcement every day and the respect of the great people I work with at the Sheriff’s Office and all Bannock County employees. Let’s make it a great 2023!