Conservators of the Peace



Message from the President

Pat Garrett, OSSA President & Washington County Sheriff Summer – “Levy Passage Signifies Vote of Confidence for Sheriff ’s Office Future” One way to characterize the relationship between a sheriff ’s office and the community is its’ interdependence. A sheriff ’s office needs a community engaged in public safety, and the community needs a capable sheriff […]

Message from OSSA Executive Director

John Bishop, OSSA Executive Director & Retired Curry County Sheriff Summer, 2017 – As I write this, we are in the middle of May which is when we remember our fellow officers and deputies who have given the ultimate sacrifice. There are only two days in America where by law the flag is to fly […]

Sheriff Bruce Lohrey, Sherman County

After graduating from high school he moved to Bend, Oregon and attended college. He originally wanted to be a school teacher, so he was taking courses to further that goal. Becoming a school teacher was a bit of a conflict for him, since as he says, “Law enforcement was a way of life for my […]

2017 Session: Most Difficult for Policing in Decades

A Legislative Session with the current legislative environment can be extremely difficult. OSSA lobbyist, Kevin Campbell, has stated, “I can confidently say that the 2017 legislative session is the most challenging in my 22-year career.” There are a number of reasons that the 2017 Legislative Session is particularly challenging for policing interests including the following: […]

Message from the President

Pat Garrett, OSSA President & Washington County Sheriff   Spring – There are several responsibilities the sheriffs have in common regardless of the county they serve. For example, all sheriffs set the leadership tone, communicate with our community and within our organizations, set goals, put the right people in the right positions, implement change, provide […]

Message from OSSA Executive Director

John Bishop, OSSA Executive Director & Retired Curry County Sheriff Spring, 2017 – As we head into the 2017 legislative season here in Salem, your sheriffs have several important issues they are facing this year. Our legislative committee really hasn’t had any time off since last year, as we are either trying to get bills […]

Sheriff Chris Humphreys, Wheeler County

Sheriff Chris Humphreys is the fifth generation of his family to live in Wheeler County. He began as a deputy sheriff with Wheeler County in 1997. In 1999 he left Wheeler County to work for the Portland Police Bureau, moving back to Wheeler County in 2013 when he was first sworn in as Wheeler County […]

DPSST – Oregon’s Best-Kept Secret

On June 1, 1961, Governor Mark O. Hatfield signed House Bill 1590, creating the Advisory Board on Police Standards and Training to establish standards for the training and certification of city and county law enforcement officers. The Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association (OSSA) has played a significant role in the formation of this Board and has […]

Legal Analysis: President’s Executive Order of January 25, 2017

Many Oregon residents are asking their local Sheriff how President Trump’s January 25, 2017 Executive Order on Immigration will change local practices. The Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association provides the following analysis of this complex issue. The answer, at least in the short term, is that immediate changes to police practices are unlikely. All Oregon police […]

Message from the President

Brian Wolfe, OSSA President & Malheur County Sheriff Winter 2016 — It has been a pleasure to serve as the president of the Oregon State Sheriffs’ Association during this past year. It has been a busy year with sheriffs helping other sheriffs. With the increase in political dissatisfaction creating a real threat to the safety […]

2017 Oregon Sheriffs’ Annual Conference

Countdown to Conference


Message from the OSSA President

washington-pat-garrettAs the newly elected president, I am honored to represent all 36 Oregon sheriffs.

The sheriff has historically been the chief executive officer of the county, and this is still true under Oregon law. Elected by you and answering directly to the voters, your sheriff can be an effective voice of the people in the serious work of protecting the community. OSSA enables us to work together to serve you best.

By way of introduction, I am in my second term as the Washington County Sheriff, where deputies serve over a half million residents across 727 square miles of rural areas, urban communities, and cities. Our deputies also operate the only county jail. While Oregon counties are diverse in terms of climate, population, and economic drivers, your sheriffs work together to solve problems and challenges that we have in common.

The sheriffs of America have always played a significant role in the history of our nation; in fact, the office of Sheriff was the first county office established in the United States. Also, the first person to read the Declaration of Independence publicly was Philadelphia Sheriff John Nixon in Pennsylvania in 1776.

I look forward to working together to strengthen the office of Sheriff and the communities we proudly serve. Thank you for your continued support of the men and women on shift every day to keep our diverse and proud communities safe.


Pat Garrett
President and Washington County Sheriff.

Jail vs. Prison … What’s the Difference?

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