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CONTACT: Peter Van Delft
SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT RECEIVES RECOGNITION FOR COMMON GROUND CABLE SHOW
Members of the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department recently participated as both presenters and attendees in the first of its kind Massachusetts Sheriff’s Association Executive Information Sharing Conference during the organization’s annual business meeting.
Hosted by Norfolk Sheriff and Massachusetts Sheriff’s Association (MSA) President Michael G. Bellotti, the conference featured a number of speakers from some of the fourteen sheriff’s departments in Massachusetts, each giving presentations about a variety of topics familiar to those in attendance from the world of corrections.
Representing the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department were: Superintendent of Human Resources Michael Harris, who presented a workshop titled “Effective Human Resources Practices” along with sheriff’s department employees from Worcester, Essex, and Middlesex Counties; Major and Assistant Deputy Superintendent Paul DeFazio, who presented “What’s Happening In MA County Corrections?” with members of Norfolk, Hampden, Middlesex, and Plymouth Counties; and Lieutenant Thomas Donahue who, presented “The How To’s Of Supervision” with Essex and Bristol Counties.
Speaking about the difficult position into which newly promoted supervisors are often placed with respect to their former colleagues, Lt. Donahue of the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department Training Academy stressed the importance of employing honesty, accountability and consistency at all times.
“In everything that you do, be straightforward and be consistent,” said Lt. Donahue. “Be direct and honest. Tell people what you expect from them and always remember how it felt to be them when you were in their shoes. You won’t always be the most popular person, but you will be respected.”
With the intent of fulfilling the vision of providing a forum in which corrections professionals could exchange information and share best practices, conference presenters also engaged audience members with a series of question and answer sessions at the completion of their workshops. Contact information and a number of evaluative tools were provided to conference attendees seeking to follow up on the day’s workshops.
“This kind of event is important because it allows for the sharing of information between the fourteen sheriff’s departments,” said MSA Executive Director Jim Walsh. “By sharing some of the successful programs and practices of each department, we can only get better collectively and individually. We look forward to having more of these kinds of events in the near future.”
The Massachusetts Sheriff’s Association is an independent state agency with a mission to provide support to the fourteen elected sheriffs of the Commonwealth and their offices. In particular, the MSA provides a structure for all these offices to work collaboratively with each other and with other criminal justice and law enforcement agencies.