Last Updated on April 6, 2022 6:02 pm
On Thursday, March 31, the Lees-McRae Campus Police Department gained a new Chief of Police in Brandon Greer, a police officer with 20 years of experience in the field. Greer previously occupied a supervisory position within the department as a lieutenant.
August 2022 will mark Greer’s two-year anniversary of working at Lees-McRae, but he is still just as passionate and excited about serving the college as he was on his first day.
Before taking the lieutenant position at Lees-McRae, Greer served in the public sphere. Starting as an unsworn security guard at Watauga Medical Center, he was able to advance in his field, spending a few years at Blowing Rock Police Department, and eventually settling at Watauga Sheriff’s Office for 16 years.
“There are some major differences between working for the county and working for the college, primarily the call types you go on and your clientele,” Greer said. “There was a lot of family violence and things of that nature; drug and alcohol abuse. Here it’s almost like being more of a mentor. We’re trying to do more education than actual law enforcement here on campus.”
Greer also points to the drastically smaller population as a welcome change from his time working for Watauga County. He said it is important to him that he forms connections with the students, staff, and faculty he sees every day, a luxury that is not always possible as a police officer working for a much larger community.
“It’s pretty refreshing not to have to interact with folks in an enforcement type of manner. It’s nice to have a conversation with the students on campus and be able to have a line of communication with them without there being this underlying crime that has been committed,” Greer said. “A lot of the interactions on campus with our students are very positive. It makes me very optimistic.”
Not only is Greer optimistic about the students he works with each day, but he is also optimistic about the positive changes that he can make in his new position as Chief of Police. He is passionate about training and hopes to bring Basic Law Enforcement Training (BLET), and rapid-deployment classes to Lees-McRae. Rapid deployment is the term used for law enforcement’s response to an active shooter.
While expanded training is only one of the many ideas Greer hopes to implement to improve and expand the effectiveness of the Campus Police Department, he also has some personal goals he hopes to achieve during his time in this position.
“I never finished my degree when I was in college, so one of my big goals is to finish out my degree with the Criminal Justice program while I’m here, and then probably minor in Business Administration,” Greer said. “I know how to be a cop. I’ve worked undercover, I’ve been on a SWAT team, I’ve been a supervisor, I know how to do most of these things, but I think there are a lot of things that I can still learn. I don’t think that I know everything there is to know about being a police officer, and there are obviously a lot of things I don’t know about being an administrator. Finishing my degree will help me with our police department here on campus.”
As the Chief of Police for Lees-McRae Campus Police Department, Greer is focused on building relationships with the members of this community and improving the effectiveness of the rest of his department. Greer plans to host various events to engage students, which will be listed in The Den.
“Our main goal is just to be here for the students and create the best experience for them,” Greer said.