MISSION & HISTORY
HITTING THE RESET BUTTON
Unfortunately, the mindset in which people are unable to tolerate or respect viewpoints at odds with their own has increasingly become the norm. We are witnessing the destruction of real civil discourse in our society more and more, everyday.
But just because this is the norm it doesn’t make it right. It takes the right mindset, the right attitude and the right heart to make a difference. These virtues within a law enforcement organization should be our goal... our mission.
A good leader must set objectives to attain any goal. My objective, together with the men and women of the Pima County Sheriff's Department, is to not necessarily find like minded people, but rather like “hearted” people.
There are certain events throughout our lives that help shape us into the individuals we eventually become. For me, one of the most significant was in January 1976, when I stood on a stage to become the first ever 20-year-old to wear the badge of the El Paso Police Department. At the end of the ceremony my mother leaned in and whispered in my ear; "There but for the grace of God go I."
The words didn't mean that much to me at the moment, but I knew it was her way of reminding me to always treat others with dignity, compassion and respect. Over the course of my 41-year career, her words would ring more and more loudly in my mind when dealing with crime victims, the disenfranchised and even co-workers going through hard times.
I come from a family of ten kids living in El Paso, Texas within walking distance of the Rio Grande. While dad worked as an auto mechanic to put food on the table, my mother stayed home to raise us. After I became a cop, two of my brothers followed suit. For us it was the streets where the action was. I truly enjoyed my work. I took a lot of assignments for the Department, including walking the streets at night, acting as a decoy, and looking to get robbed.
In 1979, I was named Officer of the Year for saving my partners life. He was being held hostage during a failed liquor store robbery. There were difficult moments, but through them we were always provided a chance to grow. I was grateful and loved my work. I received numerous accolades and Letters of Commendation over the years, but none of them were as important to me as the simple note of thanks that I would often get from ordinary citizens who I had helped in their time of need.
In 1982, I met and fell in love with my beautiful wife Charlene. She took a job with Hughes Missile Systems as a programmer. I followed her to Tucson and joined the Pima County Sheriff's Department as a Corrections Officer. I slowly worked my way through the Department, becoming a Deputy and then a Detective. I worked assignments in Homicide, Child Abuse, Sex Crimes, and General Investigations.
As a Sergeant I supervised the field Deputies, the Narcotics Unit, and the Special Investigations Unit. In 1997 I became a member of the command staff and as a Lieutenant I oversaw the Department's Property Crimes Section, the Rincon Patrol District, and Internal Affairs. In 2007 I was promoted to an executive command position, and as a Captain I headed up the Department's Patrol Division, the Homeland Security Division, and the Criminal Investigations Division. Six years later I was promoted to Bureau Chief and in January 2014 I obtained the rank of Chief Deputy.
As the second in command, I headed up the entire organization until 2015 when Sheriff Dupnik retired. I was then appointed by the Board of Supervisors as the 33rd Sheriff of Pima County. I love this Department and I love this community and I can think of no greater honor than having served as your Sheriff. During that time, we accomplished so much with a culture of compassion, tolerance, and respect and always with those words ringing in my mind: "There but for the grace of God go I."
I am running for the honor again. The Pima County Sheriff’s Department and this community deserve the very best in public safety care. The deputies, corrections, and support staff know we can do better. I'm asking for your vote to give us that chance.
A MESSAGE TO OUR TROOPS
I will bring back OUR department to the place where it once was...a place where members actually came to work looking forward to the day and left with anticipation of coming back the next day. A place where its members lived outside the shadows and could speak their opinions without fear of retaliation. A place where staff had rights, and their rights were not only respected, but protected. A place where it was never okay to be bullied, intimidated and threatened. A place where staff had a sense of pride in what they accomplished. A place where members, both working and retired, knew their career meant something and knew that what they did made a difference.
I will work hard to get the Department’s support staff, Deputy Sheriffs and Corrections Officers on the same page when it comes to compensation and benefits.
I will unite the voices of our labor groups and give those members the tools they need to do their jobs and care for their families.
I will stop the deceitful practice of converting line-level and necessary job positions into revenue for elitists’ and loyalists’ pay raises.
I will use ever-evolving technology to our collective benefit. This will provide greater efficiency, increased safety, and demonstrate fiscal responsibility.
I will leave Washington to Washington. If Washington needs to hear from me, I’m of the firm belief that I won’t need to leave my post every other week. I recognize I have a job to do right here, in Pima County.
I will never politicize the struggles of our migrants.
I will focus my attention on this Department and this community.
I will make meaningful budgetary cuts that actually help our mission without hindering our public safety obligations.
Decisions will be made with consideration to ALL possible outcomes - not just those outcomes that could impact my political career.
I will grow programs like the School Resource Officer’s Unit. This has a real impact on crime prevention, our kids, and the community in which we live.
As I did as Sheriff, I will lead by example and be actively involved with our community, its schools, churches, and non-profits...and not just every four years at election time.
I will work with community leaders to better understand their public safety issues and collectively and collaboratively find solutions.
I will NOT BE PERFECT! However, I will LISTEN to others, maintain introspect, serve with heart, remain humble, and serve with honor. Character matters!
I will NEVER LIE or make false promises to obtain one’s loyalty. In fact, the only promise I will make is this:
If elected, I promise I will work hard to ensure that everything we do is not just done right, but done for the right reasons. I know mistakes will be made, but likely they will be mistakes of the head and not of the heart. And when mistakes are made, I will always be the first to accept responsibility.