“It was really a great day,” Sisk said. “The buildup to Jan. 1, 2013, has been an exciting and emotional time. All the hard work we put into obtaining this goal was finally coming to a head, and I have a lot to be grateful for.”
Sisk, a graduate of Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School, has been second in command of the agency for the past 10 years.
For a man with such familiarity with the agency and the office, Sisk admitted there were some nerves the Dec. 31 ceremony.
“When I was getting ready to take my oath, my heart was racing,” Sisk said. “That was a pivotal moment. … My family was there to support me with a number of my colleagues. It was a very proud moment for me, and I am glad that I was able to share it with my family and friends.”
Sisk says he looks forward to the agency reaching both short- and long-term goals.
“In the short-term, we're just looking to close out everything from 2012 that is still pending or open, so that we can set our goals and objectives for 2013,” he said. “Sheriff Summers was very gracious in allowing me to go ahead and start transitioning some things in the last few days that he was here, but there were some things that just couldn't be changed until I was officially sworn in as sheriff.”
With new programs and ideas in mind for the future, Sisk says that he doesn't expect very much administrative turnover or major changes to take place with the agency.
“Our long-term goals are being developed now,” Sisk said. “I am trying to give our division supervisors and employees the month of January to get 2012 wrapped up so that we can set our goals for 2013. I already have lists for each division, and some of my ideas include things like citizen academy, promoting citizen volunteers, and starting a reserve officer program. I would also like to start a more in-depth neighborhood watch program and build a database of contacts for each neighborhood watch area, so that we can share information with them such as crime trends.”
Sisk said another big focus area will be that of school system participation, mentoring, and rehabilitation.
“I want to participate in the schools system's mentor program and have officers in our elementary schools at least a couple of times a month mentoring to at-risk children,” Sisk said. “I am also looking at more programs for inmates that are incarcerated to help them become productive members of society.”
Although there are plans for new programs and preparation for the growth of the agency, Sisk said he values the importance of the day-to-day activities on of the Sheriff's Office.
“All of the plans and ideas will be in addition to our everyday duties of serving the citizens of Catoosa County,” he said. “Officers will be polite and courteous at all times, and will serve with honor and integrity.”
Maj. Kelly Holcomb was recently named to Sisk's previous post as chief deputy and second in command, so Sisk will now search for Holcomb's replacement to serve as captain of the uniformed patrol division.
“We will take applications for that position and follow our promotional process,” Sisk said.
In addition to Sisk officially become the new county's new sheriff, 13 other officials also took an oath on Dec. 31.
Gene Lowery was sworn as probate judge, Brian House as Superior Court judge, Keith Greene as Catoosa Board of Commissioners chairman, Jeff Long and Jim Cutler as commissioners, John Gass as chief magistrate judge, Tracy Brown as clerk of Superior Court, Sandra Self as tax commissioner, Dona Giarrizzo as deputy tax commissioner, Vanita Hullander as coroner, and Sharon Anderson, Dandy Lynn, and Larry Smith as deputy coroners.