BY MELANIE BUCK –
Former Polk County Sheriff Mike Godfrey continues to advance in the ranks and now sits as the Director of the Arkansas Sheriff’s Association (ASA). Godfrey served as Sheriff in Polk County for more than six years, resigning in August 2016 to take a position as Deputy Director of ASA.
At the time, Godfrey said, “When I decided not to seek a 4th term, I had every intention of staying until the end of my current term, which ends on December 31, 2016. When the opportunity to work for the Arkansas Sheriff’s Association presented itself, I felt that it was an opportunity that I could not pass up.” And indeed, the opportunity opened yet another door much sooner than expected.
His predecessor, Ronnie Baldwin, had held the position of Director for four years and recently passed away, leaving his seat open, and Godfrey was appointed. “He had been battling cancer for a while and the idea was to hire a deputy director to help him get caught up and help him out. I came to work on August 22nd and he passed away a short time later. The following week, I was made interim director and then the Executive Board voted to make me Director. He, in his time, brought our association a long way. We were almost broke when Ronnie came in and we did not have the legislative support that we have now. He brought our association so far forward and I want to continue to grow the association like he did. I inherited a very, very good situation.”
In his new role, Godfrey will train sheriffs and network the sheriffs with vendors. Godfrey explained that the main role of the association is drug, alcohol, and bullying education in schools. He also works as a lobbyist between the association Arkansas legislators to create laws that are beneficial to sheriffs and jails around the state.
The Arkansas Sheriffs’ Association (ASA) is comprised of 75 sheriffs from across the state. The ASA holds a summer and winter convention every year to offer sheriffs the opportunity to elect board members, discuss the status of the ASA, and to assist each other with different issues such as – new laws, equipment, procedures, crime prevention, and other relative topics. The Association also offers various training throughout the year to assist Sheriffs and their Deputies in protecting and serving the citizens of Arkansas.