Loudoun County Sheriff Mike Chapman may not be fully moved into his office yet, but he's already hard at work.
On his first day on the job, Chapman went in front of the Board of Supervisors to advocate for a new, $8 million substation.
Chapman, who defeated longtime Sheriff Steve Simpson in November, has already brought in a new leadership team that includes former administrators for the DEA and FBI. Chapman is a former DEA special agent.
“The first thing I wanted to do was establish a really dynamic leadership team,” Chapman said. “That’s why I decided to have the blend of the institutional knowledge that we have within the department, and bring in some outside experts, who I’ve personally worked with.”
With former federal agents in top jobs, Chapman said the sheriff’s office will be able to work cooperatively with federal law enforcement to attack the top problem in the county: drugs.
“We were able to accomplish terrific investigations, but when we seized assets, we were able to get the money back to the state and local law enforcement officers that assisted with the case, so it’s also a financial gain,” Chapman said.
Improved communication within the department and with the public is another focus, Chapman said. Residents can expect more reverse 911 calls from the sheriff’s office.
“What we’re trying to do is to make sure that we have outreach, that we’re able to reach the community on incidents of concern,” he said.
County board chairman and fellow republican Scott York -- who'd been critical of Simpson -- expects Chapman’s leadership to boost morale in the department and increase visibility in the community.
“This sheriff will actually be at work, I think, seven days a week helping the good men and women who put themselves on the street to protect us,” York said.
Chapman, who now oversees a department of 547 deputies, let go 11 former staffers -- most in command positions -- as he reorganized.