Jun 16th – Karl Isberg – Letter to the SUN

Prepared and Qualified

Dear Editor

I support Mike Le Roux in his bid to be our next Archuleta County Sheriff.

In my time here as a journalist, I knew five county sheriffs, reporting on their activities and those of their subordinates. I knew several of the sheriffs well, on a personal level. I watched all these officials and the members of their departments do commendable work and, at other times, do less than well. In the process, I developed an opinion concerning what it takes in terms of skills and character for a sheriff to serve the community as effectively as possible.

Mike Le Roux possesses these skills and this character.

Mike is a POST-certified Colorado law enforcement officer who also possesses the administrative talents necessary to be successful as a sheriff. His working heading up Upper San Juan Search and Rescue, and the Emergency Management department, required administrative and leadership expertise and led to his appointment at Undersheriff, a job requiring involvement at all aspects of the operation of the agency – in the field. Mike has proven himself extremely capable, adaptable, and energetic. He understands the tasks set before him, and he knows how to deal with them.

And he knows the community/

It takes a decade or more to begin to know this place – its physical characteristics, and it’s people. This can’t happen over the course of a few years. Mike put in the effort, establishing a deep connection with residents and organizations in all parts of the county, with people of all ages, in all circumstances. He accomplished this over a considerable period of time, with work in law enforcement and related agencies, and with volunteer activities with groups such as GECKO, Seeds of Learning, and Rise Above Violence.

Mike is prepared and qualified to deal with the many challenges that face our next sheriff, among them the need to hire and retain high quality individuals, given the inevitable budget constraints, effective and ongoing training of road and detention personnel: dealing openly and honestly with county residents, listening when residents voice concerns, and responding appropriately; analyzing policies and practices, and making necessary changes; recognizing and dealing with day-to-day organizational details, as well as with the sometimes stressful internal agency and public situations that occur, regardless or who occupies the office.

All this and more comes with the job, and the undertaking requires a strong leader and a person of integrity. Mike’s desire to constantly seek both organizational and personal improvement and his ability to lead by example, are powerful and positive qualities he will bring to a critically important organization.

I urge my friends and neighbors to cast their ballots for Mike Le Roux.

Karl Isberg

Jun 9th – Simon Fuger – Letter to the SUN

Can’t Afford the Alternative

As a former CEO and head of a division of a Fortune 200 Company, I have read my share of resumes. After a while you begin to spot red flags that you need to pay attention to. If you see a trend of repeated employment changes not accompanied by significant promotions, this is a potential problem. If you see linear employment changes within an organization not accompanied by increased responsibility, you need to pay attention. This brings me to Boyd Neagle. Prior to coming to the Pagosa Springs Police Department, Mr Nagle had been with at least four other Police Departments over the last 26 years, never rising beyond the level of Corporal.  Hardly a ringing endorsement of leadership capability by his fellow officers. If you scratch the surface a little beyond the resume it is pretty easy to find areas of concern, including the infamous tasing incident in Cortez.  Under oath Boyd Nagle admitted that he had administered 350,000 watts of electricity, or seven administrations of the Taser, five of which were in a two and a half minute period while the victim, who suffered from a mental disability, was in handcuffs. In doing so he violated at least three of the department’s stun gun policies. The victim was eventually acquitted after a very brief jury deliberation but not after the victim had spent 297 days in jail (Durango Herald December 8th, 2014).

In the subsequent civil suit brought against the City, Boyd Neagle and fellow officers, the victim’s family, was awarded $200,000 of tax payers money. One can only imagine how many millions of dollars would have had to have been paid out had the victim passed away from his tasering at the hands of Boyd Neagle. Subsequently Boyd Neagle ran for the position of Mancos Marshall but was beaten out in the evaluation process by a much less tenured officer who had nonetheless attained the rank of Sergeant.  All of this begs the question, how did Boyd Neagle get a position with the Pagosa Springs Police department?

On the other hand if you review Mike Le Roux’s resume you would find a history of professional growth and increasing responsibility both in the private and public sector. Shortly after joining Search and Rescue, he was promoted to Commander of Emergency Services. His efforts there have been recognized statewide when he was awarded the Emergency Manager of the Year award by the State of Colorado.  After joining the Archuleta County Sheriff’s Department he was rapidly promoted to Undersheriff.  This is a resume with all attributes you are looking for. In addition Mike Leroux has been an active member of this community and has given freely of his time to local organizations well before he ever considered running for public office.  Ultimately a leader is the one person that is responsible for creating a positive, ethical organizational culture. The choice is obvious. Vote for Mike Le Roux, we can’t afford the alternative.

Simon Fuger

Jun 9th – Jim Huffman – Letter to the SUN

Best Qualified Candidate

Dear Editor,

I have researched Mike Le Roux’s record as Archuleta County Director of

Emergency Management and as Undersheriff as well as his contributions

to our community while he was still working for GECKO. I have also

spoken to Mike and to people I know and trust who have worked with and

for him.

In addition, I have read all the letters to the editor in support of Mike Le

Roux from people I know, trust, and respect who have worked closely with

him over the last eight years. With what I personally know of the way he

has operated, I believe that he has the knowledge, experience, and

compassion necessary for the job and is the best qualified candidate for

our next Archuleta County Sheriff.

Please join me in voting for Mike Le Roux for Sheriff!

Jim Huffman