PHOTO Courtesy of Jeff Perry
Perry announces bid for sheriff
Jeff Perry announced his bid for the office of Dawson County sheriff in a July 2 press release.
The retired 27-year law enforcement veteran currently teaches in the Dawson County School System where he developed the criminal justice program two years ago.
“I am excited to announce my campaign for sheriff,” Perry said in the press release. “My family and I have deep roots here in Dawson County. I am running for sheriff to serve the citizens of Dawson County because there is nothing more important to me than keeping our families safe and bringing capable leadership to the top law enforcement position in the county.”
Perry said he believes he can “bring a depth of experience to the Sheriff’s Office that is unmatched” with years of experience in law enforcement, tough decision-making and experience with managing a budget and staff. I often thought my name was ‘do more with less’ because I heard it so much, Perry said.
“I promise to bring effective leadership, employee accountability and fiscal responsibility to the office of sheriff,” he said.
Capable management of tax-payer dollars should be one of the highest priorities of an elected official, according to Perry.
“As sheriff I will ensure taxpayer dollars fund agency missions instead of expensive overruns and failed planning,” Perry’s statement reads. “I will not ask for additional monies until every taxpayer dollar is accounted for. The job of sheriff is too important to leave to the inexperienced or to those who may lack the vision and leadership to effectively do the job.”
A “fierce” anti-drug campaign through education and enforcement is something Perry has planned for the future, if he’s elected. He has a stern warning for drug dealers: “if you sell, possess or push drugs in Dawson County we will arrest you.”
Another high priority for Perry will be working with the accountability courts such as Drug Court, DUI Court and Family Court because as foster parents, Perry and his wife of 30 years, Lisa, have seen first-hand the effects of drugs on innocent children and families.
Open communication with the community is vital, according to Perry, and as sheriff, he promises to keep the community informed and engaged regarding crime and developments in Dawson County. He feels it’s important to seek community input if nothing more than to ascertain how the department is doing. Perry plans to set aside one day a month for citizens—Citizens Day—which will be an opportunity for members of the community to come in and meet with the sheriff. No appointments necessary, and Perry said he’d be available from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. to allow meeting with citizens.
Perry stated he would also conduct quarterly meetings or town hall meetings with the citizens which he envisions as going into local communities, sub-divisions, etc. to discuss with citizens safety tips, security suggestions and department news.
“I ask for your trust, your prayers and your vote so I can put my decades of experience to work to protect and serve you, the people of Dawson County as your sheriff,” Perry said.
Perry stated he would be discussing his strategic plan with citizens in the upcoming months.
More about Jeff Perry
Perry served as a parole officer with the State Board of Pardons and Paroles for 27 years having served as chief for the last 19. In that role, he managed a large district area consisting of seven rural and urban counties. At the time of his retirement Perry was one of the longest serving chiefs in the agency. Perry has been responsible for working in conjunction with multiple sheriffs’ offices, police departments, drug task forces, managing a staff of employees, devising strategic plans, managing budgets and directing day-to-day operations.
Perry’s experience in law enforcement is “unmatched”, according to the press release. He completed law enforcement basic training in 1990 in addition to over 1600 hours of training since that time. His training hours were focused in the areas of tactical communications, improvised explosive devices, Georgia Criminal Law, Georgia Constitution Law, Gangs, Drug ID/Clandestine Drug Labs, Anti-Terrorism, VIP Protective Operations and Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs.
The Dawsonville resident is a POST certified firearms instructor who was assigned to the 1996 Olympic Law Enforcement Team State Olympic Law Enforcement Command (SOLEC) and as a law enforcement supervisor for the 2004 G-8 Summit of World Leaders. He led a team of state officers and Atlanta Police Department officers during G-8. Perry previously worked on a U.S. Marshall’s Sex Offender Task Force and has been involved with Child Abduction Response Team (CART).
An alumni of Georgia Southern University, Perry has a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and has completed post-graduate course work. He completed an internship with the patrol and detective division with the Statesboro police department.
Perry completed the Certified Public Managers Program through the Carl Vinson Institute at the University of Georgia and has completed numerous leadership and professional classes including Leadership Dawson.
Perry and his wife are parents of Jacob and Jade. He is an active member of Liberty Baptist Church in Dawson County where he is a Deacon and currently serves as the Chairman of the Deacon Board and has previously served as youth director, Sunday school teacher, property trustee and Sunday School Superintendent.
An active member of the Dawsonville community, Perry is a former Jaycee, a charter member of the Dawsonville Civitan Club and a long-time youth community coach for soccer, basketball, baseball and softball. He holds or has held memberships in several professional affiliations including the Georgia Sheriff Association, Peace Officers of Georgia, Parole Association of Georgia, National Major Gang Task Force, National Rifle Association (NRA), Professional Association of Georgia Educators and the Dawson County Republican Party.