Former dispatcher who worked with Bower and Drennan backs chief deputy for sheriff

Posted 8 September 2015 at 12:00 am


I would like to share with the residents of Orleans County my thoughts on the upcoming Republican primary for Sheriff. For those who do not know me, I am the oldest son of retired Chief Deputy Ray Emerson and retired Corrections Officer Sue Emerson, so I have been around the Sheriff’s Office and known both candidates almost my entire life.

I am also a former Public Safety Dispatcher for Orleans County, and therefore worked with both candidates for almost 5 years. Since I no longer work for the Sheriff’s Office and no longer reside in Orleans County, the outcome of this election really will not affect me in any way, which allows me to give you an unbiased, however informed, opinion.

I can tell you that both Tom Drennan and Randy Bower are honest, hard working, dedicated individuals who have the best interests of the citizens of Orleans County, and the employees of the Sheriff’s Office, in mind. I thoroughly enjoyed working with both of them.

The accusations and mudslinging by certain individuals has been appalling. However, there is a simple reason that the only people making accusations are supporters of Randy Bower. They know that Chief Deputy Drennan is the qualified candidate to lead the Sheriff’s Office, and since Randy lacks any kind of law enforcement training or experience, their only hope of winning the election is by way of character assassination.

I can also tell you, after having worked with most of the deputies who have come out in support of Randy, that Undersheriff Steve Smith hit the nail on the head with his previous remarks. Without naming any names, I can tell you most of the current and former deputies that have written letters and publicly supported Randy via social media are the deputies that Tom Drennan has had to “hold accountable” for not doing their job.

From the dispatch chair, it was easy to discern which deputies we worked with were there to work hard and protect the community, and which ones were there to collect a paycheck and do as little as possible. I can tell you with certainty that not all, but most, Bower supporters fell into the latter category.

More now than ever, with the current anti-law enforcement climate in this country, the Orleans County Sheriff’s Office needs a proven law enforcement leader, not a politician running the show. Randy Bower is a great guy and an outstanding dispatcher, but he does not know any more about being a police officer than you or I do, much less about how to lead police officers. He is an aspiring politician, from a family of politicians.

Tom Drennan is not a politician, but he is a highly trained, experienced, and decorated law enforcement professional, and that is what the Sheriff’s Office and the residents of Orleans County need. I strongly encourage everyone to vote for Chief Deputy Drennan on Sept. 10 and again on Nov. 3.

Robert G Emerson