Virginia sheriffs elect Sheriff Vanessa Crawford to lead association
The members of the Virginia Sheriffs’ Association unanimously elected Petersburg Sheriff Vanessa Crawford to serve a one-year term as president of the association, an 8,900-member organization representing Virginia’s sheriffs, deputy sheriffs and sheriff’s office personnel.
Sheriff Crawford was sworn in as Petersburg’s first female sheriff in 2005 and has served on the Virginia Sheriffs’ Association’s Board of Directors since 2012.
“I am honored to serve as President of the Virginia Sheriffs’ Association and look forward to working with our members, the Governor, and the General Assembly to advance our public safety agenda,” said Sheriff Crawford. “Sheriffs are in many cases the first line of defense. We make the safety of all Virginians our top priority, and our deputies and professional staff provide critical emergency services to the communities in which we serve.”
Since taking office, Sheriff Crawford has acquired certification as a National Certified Jail Manager through the Jail Manager Certification Commission by authority of the American Jail Association and is the only sheriff in Virginia to have obtained the Department of Justice status of being a Certified PREA (Prison Rape Elimination Act) Auditor.
John W. Jones, Executive Director of the Virginia Sheriffs’ Association, commented on the significance of Sheriff Crawford’s election given the need to fund salaries at the level deputies deserve as well as an increasingly-difficult climate in which our sheriffs and deputies serve. “Sheriff Crawford is highly-respected not only with law enforcement officials across the Commonwealth but also among Virginia’s legislative and political leaders,” said Jones. “She will help ensure that the Virginia Sheriffs’ Association remains not only a powerhouse at the Capitol but also the premier public safety advocate in every corner of the Commonwealth.”
Joining Sheriff Crawford on the 2017-18 Virginia Sheriffs’ Association’s Board of Directors include the following officers:
- King George County Sheriff Steve Dempsey — First Vice President
- Shenandoah County Sheriff Tim Carter — Second Vice President
- Gloucester County Sheriff Darrell Warren — Secretary
- Alleghany County Sheriff Kevin Hall — Treasurer
- Newport News Sheriff Gabe Morgan — Immediate Past President
Approximately 300 sheriffs, deputy sheriffs, and special guests from across Virginia attended the three-day annual conference in Williamsburg which featured an array of speakers relating to criminal justice, cultural diversity, legal issuesÂ and sheriff’s office management.
The Virginia Sheriffs’ Association is professional trade association representing the interests of law enforcement and sheriffs’ offices in Virginia. It is the primary voice for Virginia sheriffs in the General Assembly on all matters relating to public safety.