Four candidates have been selected as finalists in Asheville’s search for a Chief of Police. They are:
Robert Buckman: Chief Deputy of the Loudoun County, Va., Sheriff Office Operations Bureau, Lt. Colonel Buckman has been with the department 33 years. He leads 400 people in the Operations Bureau, including 360 sworn deputies in the Special Operations and Criminal Investigations divisions. He managed programs for the Adult Detention Center for 15 years. He provided leadership as the department transitioned from a centralized policing model to a decentralized problem-solving policing philosophy, which involved extensive training of sworn and civilian staff. Emphasis was placed on building community partnerships with schools, neighborhoods and religious and cultural organizations.
Tammy Hooper: Deputy Chief of Police for the City of Alexandria, Va., since 2014, Hooper has held a variety of positions with the department, starting as a patrol officer in 1989. She’s supervised a patrol squad as sergeant and served as commander of the Vice Narcotics Division. She oversaw the department’s Community Support Section where she executed the Alexandria Police Department’s Community Policing Plan. Hooper became the first woman to serve in the rank of captain at the department. In 2007, she became commander of Internal Investigations. As a Support Services Division commander, she has had oversight in property and evidence, emergency communications and planning and accreditation.
Steve Sharron: Assistant Chief with the Tyler, Texas Police Department, Sharron has 28 years of law enforcement experience, 22 of them in supervisory and command level positions. Sharron’s experience extends to repairing relations with minority communities. In his current role, he supervises all investigative units, dispatch operations, property and evidence, fleet and building maintenance and the community response unit. This includes the community policing units. He has hands-on experience partnering with community groups to understand issues and help solve neighborhood problems. He has been the Assistant Chief of Police since 2001.
Wade Wood: Asheville’s current Deputy Chief of Police held the position of Interim Chief of Police from 2011-2012. Wood has been with the Asheville Police Department since 1992. He was assigned as Assistant to the Chief/Administration from 2012-2013. Wood has been captain of the Criminal Investigative Division and the Administrative Division. Early in his career, he served as a community police officer. He’s been a Central and North District commander. He served on multiple community/city committees, including the Juvenile Crime Prevention Coalition, the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force and the Coalition of Asheville Neighborhoods (CAN).
Meet the candidates
The public will have an opportunity to meet the finalists during a drop-in event from 5-6 p.m., Monday, May 18 at the Wilma Sherrill Center on the UNC-Asheville campus.
At 6 p.m., following the meet and greet, candidates will make presentations on a pre-determined subject. Community members will have the opportunity to offer feedback on candidates through comment cards. The feedback will be considered in the selection process.
The public is invited and encouraged to attend both events. Child care will be available onsite for children kindergarten age and older.
The search process
The City selected Affion Public to provide consulting services for the Chief of Asheville Police Department recruitment process. The City’s former Police Chief William Anderson retired Dec. 30.
Input gathered from Asheville police department employees, community stakeholders and City of Asheville executive management was used to develop a comprehensive profile to reflect responsibilities, core competencies and professional characteristics and traits, education and training, operational and organization issues and other factors that relevant to the position.
Caption: Asheville Chief of Police finalists, clockwise from upper left, are Robert Buckman, Tammy Hooper, Steve Sharron and Wade Wood.