By Natalie Johnson / firstname.lastname@example.org
Sheriff Rob Snaza opened the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office Annual meeting Thursday afternoon at Bethel Church in Chehalis by asking the audience, made up of corrections officers, deputies and their families, what the Sheriff’s Office did in 2016.
“What didn’t we do?” he answered.
During much of the nearly two-hour meeting, Snaza saluted Sheriff’s Office staff for their work, calling them “team players,” “role models,” and “individuals I look up to each and every day.”
Snaza noted that the Sheriff’s Office went through a number of changes in 2016, including the departure of longtime Chief Stacy Brown and Jail Chief Kevin Hanson, and thanked new Chief Dusty Breen and Jail Chief Chris Sweet for taking over.
Snaza handed out a number of awards to Sheriff’s Office staff as well as citizens.
Four Lewis County citizens — Matt Mohney, Chad Smith, Teresa Smith and April Brathovd — were give the Citizen Life Saving Award. Deputy Tyson Brown received the Sheriff’s Life Saving Medal.
Snaza also awarded Debbie Campbell, Linda Raschke, Linda Lee, Angela French and Sue Muller, of United Way, with a Citizenship Award for their help with the Sheriff’s Office Shop with a Cop program.
Sgt. Alan Stull was given the Sheriff’s Award, Deputy Skylar Eastman and Corrections Deputy Kimberly Crook received Top Performer Awards.
Employee of the Year awards went to Accountant Sandy Lupo, of the Special Services Bureau, Support Technician Jennifer Teitzel, of the Corrections Bureau, Corrections Deputy Jeremy Engel, of the Corrections Bureau, and Deputy Jeff Godbey, of the Field Operations Bureau.
Snaza recognized two people, from the Corrections and Special Services bureaus, with Guardian Awards — Jail Captain Chris Tawes and Detective Jamey McGinty.
“We could not be where we are on the corrections side without Chris,” Snaza said.
Snaza also praised McGinty for his work on sex offender registration and sex crimes in Lewis County.
“He’s a very humble person,” Snaza said. “This is not an easy job.”
As the annual meeting drew to a close, the Sheriff read through an outline of his more than two-dozen priorities and plans for the rest of 2017.
First, he said the Sheriff’s Office and Jail should be accredited through the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs by the end of the year.
Other priorities include maintaining programs such as the Joint Narcotics Enforcement Team, Special Enforcement Team and Sheriff’s Mentoring Students.
Snaza said he also wants to maintain the agency’s work in Lewis County’s SWAT team and would like to work to establish a Regional Crisis Negotiation Team. He noted a team has also recently established a cold case team.
Snaza noted that the full list of priorities will be available at http://lewiscountywa.gov/sheriff.
Lewis County Sheriff’s Office Award Recipients
- Special Services Bureau– Detective Jamey McGinty
- Corrections Bureau – Captain Chris Tawes
Employee of the Year Awards for 2016
- Services Bureau – Accountant Sandy Lupo
- Corrections Bureau – Support Technician II Jennifer Teitzel
- Corrections Bureau – Corrections Deputy Jeremy Engel
- Field Operations Bureau – Deputy Jeff Godbey
Top Performer Awards for 2016
- Deputy Skylar Eastman
- Corrections Deputy Kimberly Crook
- Sergeant Alan Stull
Sheriff Life Saving Medal
- Deputy Tyson Brown
Citizen Life Saving Award
- Matt Mohney
- Chad Smith
- Teresa Smith
- April Brathovd
Citizenship Award (United Way/Shop with a Cop)
- Debbie Campbell
- Linda Raschke
- Linda Lee
- Angela French
- Sue Muller