Retired undersheriff says Drennan has proven himself, should be next sheriff

Posted 31 August 2015 at 12:00 am


As we rapidly approach the Republican primary for the next Sheriff of Orleans County, we all have seen the many signs for Tom Drennan and Randy Bower. The signs are nice, I suppose, but this election is about more than signs.

I agree with Drennan’s slogan, “Experience Matters.” I prefer a sheriff who knows what the job is and Drennan has, in many aspects, already “done it.”

I worked at the Sheriff’s Office for almost 28 years and was there when Randy (Bower), Tom (Drennan) and Chris (Bourke) started their careers. All three of them are my friends, and I hope all three remain so, after this election is over.

Randy is a great dispatcher and, should I ever need to call “911” in an emergency, I would hope he is the one that answers my call. Likewise, Chris has had a great career as a Road Patrol deputy and supervisor. He, too, is good at what he does. I do not mean to minimize their respective accomplishments.

I have, however, witnessed much more with Tom Drennan and what he has accomplished in his career. Tom’s commitment, over the years, to expand his law enforcement expertise is impressive, as reflected in his resume.

Tom was assigned to Road Patrol, promoted to lieutenant, promoted to investigator and eight years ago, promoted to chief deputy. Tom was not given those promotions, he earned them.

As chief deputy, Tom is the Department’s 3rd in command. In the absence of the sheriff and undersheriff, the chief deputy is responsible for all aspects of the day-to-day operations of the Sheriff’s Office. That includes Road Patrol, Corrections, Investigators, Civil, Dispatch and overall budgetary oversight. Tom has not only performed these functions, but he has performed these functions very well.

With reference to the suggestion that Drennan is not naming his undersheriff, is some sort of a political ploy, a lack of decision-making skills, or that his undersheriff may not be as qualified, is absurd.

Drennan has made a career of making good decisions. I have no doubt his undersheriff will be more than qualified.

I know who I would like to see as my next sheriff. That man is Tom Drennan.

Richard Smith
Retired Orleans County undersheriff