Congratulations to Joe Richards for being selected the Santa Rosa Junior College Employee of the Month for May 2013. Joe was originally an SRJC Police Department cadet and was officially hired as a police dispatcher in 2007. Since 2012, he has served as a police officer for the District. He was also recently selected to be a Field Training Officer with the responsibility of training newly hired police officers.
Matt McCaffrey, Chief of Police for the Sonoma County Junior College District, nominated Joe for his professionalism, dedication, and for the care and courteousness he applies to his duties. “Joe is a great example of a professional police officer. He is hard working and takes great pride in the college and community he serves,” said Chief McCaffrey. Joe’s professional dedication is demonstrated by the fact that he studies case law in order to, as he says, “constantly improve my knowledge and skills.”
As a district police officer, Joe is responsible for patrolling the District and enforcing laws. In 2012 Joe helped solve a sexual assault investigation by collaborating with both the Santa Rosa Police Department and the Santa Rosa District Attorney. He wrote and served two of his own search warrants that aided the investigation.
“I think it’s important for Joe to be recognized by his peers and the college community,” said Steven Potter, Police Sergeant of the Sonoma County Junior College District Police. “Joe was instrumental in the 2012 rape investigation. Working alongside Joe during this investigation was one of the highlights of my career and certainly a highlight for the professionalism of our department.”
Joe said that a highlight of his work at the College was when he was honored at the Northern California Chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) annual ceremony. In March 2013 Joe was recognized by MADD and the Office of Traffic Safety for his excellence in impaired driver apprehension. During the year 2012 he made 45 DUI arrests.
Joe was born in Las Vegas, Nevada, and was raised in Sonoma County. He attended Santa Rosa Junior College and received an associate’s degree. Joe stays busy with his family; he has a wife, a daughter, and two dogs. He is also the Vice President of Sonoma County’s chapter for the National Latino Peace Officers Association. He loves to cook and is an avid reader.
Joe believes that the best thing about his job is the interaction with people from different walks of life and the caring community the college has to offer. “I love to learn about people and where they come from,” Joe said. “Everyone has a great story and you can learn something from everyone.”