Porter’s endorsement, in his own words

The following is a complete and verbatim copy of Retired Bend PD Chief Jim Porter’s endorsement of Scott Schaier for Sheriff. You can find the original at Mr. Schaier’s website, under Endorsements.

Why, you might well ask, would I publish Porter’s endorsement of Schaier in my blog, when I’ve already publicly endorsed Sheriff Shane Nelson?

The answer is: because elections matter. And so does critical thinking. Read my full answer here.

May the best man win.

Verbatim: Porter’s Endorsement of Scott Schaier for Sheriff

By Jim Porter, Chief of Police, Bend Police Department (Ret)

Former Bend Police Chief Jim Porter. Source: Bend Source. Credit: City of Bend, Oregon

As a resident of Deschutes County for the past 29 years, the recently retired Chief of Police for the Bend Police Department, a Sheriff’s Deputy and a military leader, I feel the need to share my thoughts, beliefs, and experiences.

Based upon my internal and external observations of the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, I urge voters to embrace the need for change in direction and leadership at OUR Sheriff’s Office by voting for Scott Schaier as our next Sheriff of Deschutes County.

I am in a unique position as I offer this endorsement for Scott Schaier for I have served with Sheriff Nelson for over two decades and supported his original appointment to Sheriff in 2015. I have led three interagency teams serving all residents of Deschutes County since 2003 and was a member of the 9-1-1 Board.

In addition, for the better part of a decade I had the pleasure to work with Scott Schaier while he served as one of my officers at the Bend Police Department. I have watched Scott as he sought increased skills and knowledge in our profession.

I have served as a law enforcement leader in Central Oregon for over two decades and have had the opportunity to mentor, supervise and serve with a large number of the current leadership at the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office. I have had the pleasure of working with many of the deputies who serve all of us with honor, dedication and commitment.

Using modern law enforcement management and leadership techniques, my team took the Bend Police Department from a regionally respected department to an agency that has won national awards and international acclaim for our operations to secure unprecedented trust and support of the citizens of Bend.

From my personal observations of our Sheriff’s office since Sheriff Nelson’s election, I have a clear understanding what the lack of cohesive leadership, poorly managed operations and misspent tax dollars has done to negatively impact our once well lead Sheriff’s Department.

A recent internal survey I have been shown shows morale amongst our deputies has reached rock bottom. Sixty percent of our deputies have seriously considered leaving the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office seeking employment at other agencies. Nearly seventy percent of our deputies report there is a major morale problem within the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office.

The current model of operations, management and leadership at the Sheriff’s Office dates back to the 1980’s. I believe this is the cause of the current low morale and the office is in desperate need of change. A 21 st century leadership model which best utilizes our tax dollars, improves safety and focuses on retaining the members of the Sheriff’s Office, who are considering leaving for other departments, is the change we NEED!

Scott Schaier represents the change needed at this pivotal moment to modernize our Sheriff’s Department. Scott will focus the use of our tax dollars appropriately and support the dedicated and hardworking Sheriff’s Department members. Scott will reestablish law enforcement partnerships thrown away by Sheriff Nelson and move out of the silo created by current leadership.

What Scott may lack in “traditional” experience, he more than makes up for with his energy, integrity, understanding of leadership principles and his commitment to the desperate and immediate need to modernize our Sheriff’s Department.

Scott has collaborated with seasoned professionals in the law enforcement field to develop a plan to increase services, raise morale within the Sheriff’s Department, and better utilize our tax dollars.

Scott is committed to make Deschutes County a much safer place,  reduce lawsuits, increase integrity, honor our veterans who serve as deputies and increase transparency all while staying within the current budget.

Unlike Sheriff Nelson, Scott understands it is not a matter of needing more funding, it is a matter of better using the funding that is presently available. Scott’s approach to fiscal responsibility will move us away from chasing the purchases of helicopters and back to a place where OUR hard earned money is used respectfully.

WE NEED CHANGE! Our Sheriff’s Department must move into the 21 st Century and have increased transparency, integrity and service.

Sheriff Nelson, while under oath, stated “The Sheriff’s Office policies do not apply to the Sheriff.” We need to vote for a Sheriff who understands the rules and policies DO apply to them.

It’s time for change to bring our Sheriff’s Department out of the 1980’s and to elect a sheriff who knows our votes are a clear signal. We must elect a Sheriff who believes the rules apply to them.

Most importantly, we need a Sheriff who will lead by example and use our tax dollars in an efficient manner as we face budget shortfalls.

The only candidate who represents this needed change is Scott Schaier. Please join me as I vote Schaier for Sheriff! 

Sincerely and humbly serving all of Deschutes County for the past 29 years,

Jim Porter, Chief of Police, Bend Police Department (Ret)

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