Current occupation: General manager for Wyoming Landscape
Years in Teton County: 46
Lives in: Hoback/Hog Island area
Slade Ross has 19 years of full-time law enforcement experience with the Teton County Sheriff’s Office, working in nearly every position. He graduated from the Federal Bureau of Investigations National Academy in 2010 and has over 3,000 hours of law enforcement training experience.
“I have built relationships, trust and respect with many federal, state and local partners,” he said.
Ross is running as an Independent to free the sheriff’s office of partisanship.
“I am extremely concerned about the current trajectory of the sheriff’s office and want to make it an agency the community can be proud of,” he said. “As a sixth-generation Teton County resident, I have a network of family and friends in the valley and strive to protect this community so that others too may raise a family, work and recreate.”
What is the biggest issue facing the sheriff's office?
Recruitment, retention and training. It takes years for a deputy to become truly effective and to serve the community in the way it deserves. Our goal should be to keep deputies and not just provide a training ground for other agencies. We should be a leader in law enforcement effectiveness.
Teton County Sheriff's Office is understaffed. How do you plan to attract and retain experienced employees?
Under my leadership and my administration I will make sure employees understand that I am working to make their jobs enjoyable, I will be there to support them personally and professionally, and they will know I am working to solve housing issues. I understand that people are our greatest resource and recruiting takes a lot of work to be done properly.
What style of law enforcement do you support?
The sheriff’s office should primarily be a protect-and-serve agency with an emphasis on horizontal leadership. I strongly believe members of law enforcement should support and enhance their community not rule it. Information and decision-making in a horizontal organization means involving networked teams to ensure the organization’s vision is achieved. As a team we can more effectively work together to make this the safest and most eminent community around.
Which community organizations do you plan on collaborating with and why?
My goal is to collaborate with the community as a whole, and any organization that is interested. The sheriff’s office should have an open-door policy with regard to communication. Our area has a multitude of issues to solve, and as a cooperative team I believe we can identify, prioritize, prevent and solve community problems through a variety of law enforcement services.
What are your thoughts on the confusing current state of the law regarding CBD oils and edibles in Wyoming?
As sheriff, I am duty bound to enforce the laws. It would be very dangerous to start selecting which laws to enforce. If a law is confusing or out dated, I believe the sheriff’s office should work with legislatures to advocate for an immediate change.
An off duty Colorado officer pulled her gun on a teen she thought was committing a crime. How do you feel about her response? Do you think she should have been prosecuted?
An officer should pull their gun if they perceive a serious threat to life or limb. As the sheriff, it would be my duty to investigate and provide evidence. Prosecution is in the hands of the prosecuting attorney’s office who would follow the judicial standards.