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Indian Valley Record
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July 15, 2009     Indian Valley Record
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July 15, 2009

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2A Wednesday, July 15, 2009 Indian Valley Record Hagwood announces candidacy for sheriff in 2010 Joshua Sebold Staff Writer jsebold@plu Plumas County's Acting Un- dersheriff Greg Hagwood re- cently announced his inten- tion to run for Plumas County sheriff in the June 2010 elec- tion. The Plumas County Clerk- Recorder's Office reported as of Friday that Hagwood and retired deputy Bob Shipp are the only candidates that have filed paperwork to run. Hagwood recently sat down for an interview to announce his candidacy and explain his reasons for running. The interview has been re- formatted to categorize the statements according to topic and does not necessarily re- flect a chronological sequence at all times. The introduction and conclusion are comprised of statements Hagwood made at the beginning and end of the interview. Greg Hagwood Introduction Hagwood began by explain- ing his personal reasons for wanting to take on more re- sponsibility in the county by assuming the position of sher- iff. His attachment to the re- gion was the first aspect of the job that he mentioned. "I've been with the sheriffs depart- ment coining up on 21 years, and the reason I came back to Plumas County after I gradu- ated, after I went to college, was because I love it here," Addressing the department itself he added, "I always wanted to come to work here at the sheriffs department." He also talked about the lifestyle and place in the com- munity that his work with the department has granted him. "It's become not just a job and it's not just a career. It's a part of my life, it's a part of my family's life. My mother and father are still in this commu- nity. My children are here. They go to our schools." Hagwood also voiced his as- pirations and high expecta- tions for the future of the de- partment and his belief that he can help it reach those goals. "I want us to do better than what we've done. I want us to be able to realize the real po- tential of the men and women that work at the sheriffs de- partment. "We have a pool of men and women that are incredibly dedicated and very talented, and it's my sense that their abilities and talents and their dedication haven't been brought to bear to the extent that we can, and I've worked for four different sheriffs now. "I've watched the different styles of administering. I've watched the different respons- es that we've had in the com- munities and in our agency. "I think that we can do bet- ter. "I think the men and women at the sheriffs depart- ment are ready to provide a better service, and when I leave this agency I want to be proud of what we've accom- plished. I have a philosophy... I have a vision I think that is reasonable and is attainable. I think it will provide a better level of service to our commu- nities and I think the commu- nities are already beginning to respond in some measure to a different approach." He concluded, "The funda- mental, what it boils down to, is I just love doing what I do." Philosophy Hagwood said his transi- tions from deputy to investi- gator to patrol sergeant to in- vestigations sergeant and now undersheriff have exposed him to a lot of circumstances that could be looked at "as challenges, or you can look at them as opportunities." "You know glass half full, glass half empty. I look at it as the glass is haft full." The acting undersheriff seemed to suggest his philoso- phy of optimism and opportu- nity made him very open to changes in the department on various levels. "I think we're going to be bringing about some changes in specific services; but I , think we're going tobe bring- ing around some changes in terms of the general attitude and the approach that I be- lieve the community will re- spond very favorably to." Mindset Hagwood said he recognized that law enforcement was a different kind of field than most professions and required the cultivation of a specific type of mindset for employees to be able to balance life and work. "Law enforcement is a very different culture and the peo- ple in law enforcement, by and large, don't look at it as a DRIVEWAY MAINTENANCE SLURRY SEALCOATING SSIH OIL HOT CRACK FILLING PATCHING FREE ESTIMATES SERVING ALL OF PLUMAS COUNTY 29581 HWY 89 CANYON DAM CA 95923 C-12 CA LIC. #762465 530 - 284 - '11474 Huge Summer Sale On All Cabins: ~ sizes vary ~ Chukarberry Cabin the "" Full Lot Development/Turn Key Homes Choose from: Log Cedar Hardi Panel Metal Roofs also available Homes with 8 foot porches, including our VERY popular 2/2 model 313] 22770 Antelope Blvd., Red Bluff, 530-529'4085 job. "It becomes almost an all- encompassing aspect of their life, and to the extent that we have people dedicating their lives to this, I think we need to cultivate them and develop them and allow them to real- ize their potential, because we have a lot of men and women at the agency who have tremendous potential and are incredibly dedicated and very, very talented, and it's really enjoyable for me to have an opportunity to help that po- tential be realized. "I also am looking to take on these added responsibili- ties, because I think there's been an attitude and a mind- set that hasn't been as service- oriented historically as I think the community would like. "In this day and age the management styles that typi- cally ruled law enforcement in the '70s and into the '80s aren't nearly as effective as I think a different approach can be." Cooperation and patience Hagwood went on to discuss his hopes for more collabora- tion and communication be- tween the sheriffs office, oth- er agencies and the public. He also talked about how those relationships could be improved. "I think calm, reasoned, well thought-out approaches with input from the people that are affected develops much more effective working relationships--be it in neigh- borhoods or with businesses or with other government of- fices, be it the district attor- ney's office, probation, the courts. "We cannot be an island anymore, and we can't take an isolationist approach to what we do. "We need to, I think, tO open ourselves up to the public. I think we need to understand our roles in a community and not overstep our authorities." Keeping it in context The acting undersheriff also expressed, a need for the sher- iris office to remind itself of what power it has attained and why authority has been given to the agency. He also said it would be im- portant for employees to be re- instilled with a sense of the impact their actions have on people in the community. "You know as a law enforce- ment officer or when you're in corrections, you have, you are granted, incredible authority; and you have an immeasur- able ability to impact people's lives. As we go through our careers and we do it day in and day out, sometimes it's easy to lose sight of that or lose the appreciation for that. "What we may do on a daily basis, and we've talked about it before, where an officer makes a car stop, he might make two or three, and you know that evening it's not even on his mind, but that one car stop for that one individ- ual cduld be the most signifi- cant event in their life for weeks or months. How you manage that authority, and how you manage yourself has a huge, huge impact on peo- ple's lives." Conversely, he added, "Sometimes you have to exer- cise your authorities to the full extent." What we're here for To explain what he believed helps officers make good deci- sions about how much muscle to flex in a given situation, he said, "It goes back to my basic premise, that we're public ser- vants and we're problem- solvers. "The public is not there for our entertainment. We are there for them, to help them with their problems, and sometimes solving a problem involves taking people to jail. "Sometimes it doesn't have to, and if we can foster a mind- set within our agency that is: 'We approach problems with the idea of solving them, we don't invent problems that don't exist or create problems that aren't there.' "When you find yourself in a situation and you're dealing with people, usually in anx- ious situations or stressful sit- uations, you need to address it calmly and fairly and as gen- tly as you can to the extent you can. "There are those situations where you have to exercise your authorities to the full measure, but maintaining a constant sense of that authori- ty and what I think our offi- cers roles ought to be in our communities is something that I would like the opportu- nity to bring about." Staying grounded Hagwood focused on a need to approach police work with a philosophical mindset that recognizes the reasons behind police work instead roman- ticizing guns, bullets, cars and handcuffs. "I think our communities have changed and I think it's time that our attitude and our approaches keep step with that. while we can't always give special interests exactly what they want, we need to do everything we can to just pro- vide the service. "It,s very easy to lose sight of that after you've done this work for years and years. "You know you have your set, you have your mindset, and sometimes you have to compel yourself to step away from that and look at situa- tions from the people you're serving's perspective. I think we need to carry out our re- -)Accounting Services Individual * Business Non-Profit Bookkeeping * Payroll * Notary * Taxes Mary Cheek, EA, CPA Certified Public Accountant Licensed to practice by the IRS 258-1040 138 Willow St., Chester (Next to Chevron) " MaryCheekCPA@FronUerNet.Net \\; Over 17 years experienc? Plumasz.x, HEALTH CARE FOUNDATION Accepting Applications for Board Members PHCF is seeking applicants for volunteer board members. PHCF provides a means by which donors can provide direct financial support to help Plumas District Hospital fund facilities and medical technology to enhance healthcare in Plumas county. Applicants should possess these qualities: A passion for enhancing the ability of Ptumas District Hospital to provide quality healthcare to our community. Willingness to actively engage in fundraising for PHCF. This includes individual solicitations, undertaking special events, writing mail appeals, and the like. Willingness to make an annual financial donation to PHCF. Have willingness to commit time for board meetings, committee meetings and special events. / For questions or more information contact Tiffany Leonhardt at 530-283.7971. Applications accepted through Friday, July 31at 5 pm. sponsibilities with a level of humility and a genuine rever- ence and appreciation for the authority that people in these communities have given us. "It's not authority that we take. It's authority that's giv- en, and that's very humbling when you really think about it in a philosophical framework. It's really pretty incredible. "There are very, very few professions that you have the ability to do what we can do. It's, you know, the ability to take away people's freedoms, the ability to ultimately take somebody's life. "You need to have a rever- ence for that authority and those abilities, and if you lose sight of that, then you're not going to be serving the people. I think that is what really needs to be brought back to our agency is a stronger sense of that." Learning from predecessors The acting undersheriff said being a long-term PCSO employee has given him a chance to watch multiple sheriffs and their different strategies in running the de- partment. He said the lessons learned from that experience would be a big factor in his decision- making, if elected. "I've had the opportunity to work with a lot of great people and all of the different administrations have had different styles. While there will be occasions where I don't always know what to do, as I look back on the last 20 years, I've certainly learned what not to do. "Every administration has had some successes and every administration has had some difficulties, and that's not a judgment about those admin- istrations; it's a fact of life. I think we have the ability to develop some transparency and a much better working re- lationship with the public that we serve. It doesn't work the other way. The public is not there to serve us and the pub- lic isn't there for our enter- tainment." "We :serve them and when you develop an appreciation for that whole concept, I think it has a natural effect on your performance and the ap- proach that you take when you go to work." mentality Hagwood also explained how he would want PCSO em- ployees to think about their job in the future. "Our officers, when they get dressed and get ready for work, I don't want them thinking about how many tickets they're going to write or how many people they're going to put in jail. "I want them thinking about the person around the corner who had a burglary and 'how can I help them get their property back?' "I want them thinking about a youngster that may be Kory Felker, MPT on site for you 5 days a week] Local QHS graduate Class of 1995 Actively involved in community clubs and athletics PLUM PHYSICAL THERAPY Kory Felkcr, MPT 78 Central Ave., Quincy 283-2202 having some difficulties in his family or with substance abuse and 'can I stop by and visit with him and is there a way to make a positive impact on people's lives today' as op- posed to 'how many people I can arrest.' "When you adopt this idea that you're going to go to work and you're going to lock people up, then I think you're skating on thin ice. I think you're los- ing sight of why you're there, and especially in small com- munities the need to provide that service is even greater." Small-town officers The acting undersheriff also addressed the specific psycho- logical and Social effects of be- ing a small-town law enforce- ment officer and the need for management to be aware of those differences. "In large metropolitan de- partments, in large cities, as a law enforcement officer, you're a law enforcement offi- cer and that's what people see you as. In small communities you're a law enforcement offi- cer but you're also so-and-so's brother or sister or that deputy's son plays on my son's baseball team. "There's no anonymity. You can't expect to enjoy any level of anonymity when you hold a position within the sheriffs department in a small commu- nity. When you go to work and you interact with somebody under some stressful circum- stances, you need to realize that person's children may be in your children's class and you may be going on field trips with these people. So when you understand that and ap- preciate it, I think you need to tailor the service that you pro- vide in keeping with that. "It's very, very different and it makes being a law en- forcement officer in a small community that much more challenging, because I grew up in Quincy. "There's people still in Quincy that I went to elemen- tary school with; that I went to high school with; and I graduated with them; I've known them all my life, and there's been occasions where I've had to take them into cus- tody or make an arrest, and it makes it that much more chal- lenging. "Being a law enforcement of- ficer, be it dispatch or correc- tions, working for the sheriffs department in a small commu- nity is much, much more tax- ing in terms of doing a good job than in a large metropoli- tan area, because you arrest somebody for something one night, the next week they may be cooking your meals at a restaurant that you go to. "You can do your job and be effective and still maintain a measure of respect and digni- ty within your community. "It's when you lose sight of some of the ideals that we've talked about, that living in a small community and being a law enforcement officer be- comes more difficult. "If you're going to be suc- cessful you have to treat peo- ple fairly, reasonably, and if there's a situation where you have to take them into cus- tody, and you've done your job reasonably and fairly, chances are they're going to understand that." Conclusion As the interview came to a close Hagwood said, "It's a great agency, we've got great people. We live in wonderful communities, and I look at it as just a tremendous opportu- nity to move our department forward to that next level that I think the public will appreci- ate." 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