Elkhart County Sheriff's Department

Celebrating our Character

Celebrating our Character

Sheriff Brad Rogers instituted a philosophy of focusing on the character of a person at the Elkhart County Sheriff’s Department. Programs come and go, but a character philosophy is something that begins with the leader and spreads to all employees. This philosophy is not just intended to make the department better, but intends to make the person better, whether at work, home or play. He wants employees to be successful in all walks of life, not just at work. If they are successful at home and at play, they will likely be successful at work

At the Elkhart County Sheriff’s Department, we use this philosophy through the resources of Strata Leadership, LLC, and the methods of Character Core or C3, which stands for Character, Competence, and Consistency. The company points out, “Most companies hire for competence but fire for character. This imbalanced approach is expensive, risky and draining.” Strata Leadership and the Character Core philosophy helps me “break that cycle and build a positive culture built on character and competence.” (Quoted from Strata Leadership website.)

One of the largest elements of this philosophy is the recognition of employees’ character qualities, at the very least on their employment anniversary date, but also through the year, such as in employee performance reviews, and special circumstances of incredible character displays. It’s easy to tell someone they did a “good job today,” which is easily glossed over and soon forgotten. But when you recognize an employee for having initiative, organizational skills, courtesy, loyalty, decisiveness, honesty, positivity, cooperation, availability, determination, creativity, respect or trustworthiness, you impact them personally to their core. Thus, our recognitions are not self-promotions to the public, but rather part of our philosophy of building and praising character for the employee.

If you’d like more information on Character Core leadership visit their website at strataleadership.com.


Brandon Martin

Recently, Patrol Officer Brandon Martin was recognized for his decisiveness, as he processes information and finalizes difficult decisions. Brandon does this by gathering accurate information, while keeping a clear perspective, in order to make the correct decision. Patrol Officer Martin also recognizes that making a decision is just the beginning, and will follow through until his task is complete.  

Fred Mock

Corrections Detective Fred Mock was recognized for his patience, as he takes the time necessary to work through difficult situations. Det. Mock is not derailed by unexpected challenges and remains calm when encountering difficulties throughout his investigations. This helps him develop positive connections with both inmates and co-workers, creating a less tense atmosphere around him.

Kerry Connors

Corrections Officer Kerry Connors was recognized for her loyalty, as she continues to demonstrate her commitment to others. C/O Connors has always been committed to her work with the department and invests her time and energy with the people she encounters.

Joseph Doering

Corrections Corporal Joseph Doering was recognized for his punctuality, as he always shows respect for others by doing the right thing at the right time. Cpl. Doering routinely shows he values his supervisors and coworkers time by being dedicated, starting a new task immediately, and finishing it on time.

Dustin Sahlhoff

Recently, Patrol Officer Dustin Sahlhoff was recognized for his tolerance as he demonstrates respect for others who do not share his perspectives. He does this by looking beyond appearances and interacting with others without prejudice while still maintaining a professional standard. As a School Resource Officer, Officer Sahlhoff continues to respond appropriately in order to make an impact on students while also upholding his personal standards of professionalism.

Patrol Officer Sahlhoff also recently celebrated being with the Sheriff’s Department for 10 years.

Congratulations, Officer Sahlhoff and thank you for your dedication.

Colin Wold

Corrections Officer Colin Wold was recognized for his discretion as he recognizes and avoids using words, actions, and attitudes that could bring undesirable consequences. He demonstrates this through his restraint as he does not give in to sudden impulses that would result in him saying or doing something that would not benefit those around him. CO Wold also looks beyond the moment to consider the long term effects of his decisions.


Isaac Troyer

Corrections Officer Isaac Troyer was recognized for his responsibility, as he consistently knows and does what is expected of him. CO Troyer is known to be accountable, to always do his best, and keep his commitments without making excuses.


Austin Loucks

Corrections Officer Austin Loucks was recognized for his thoroughness as he consistently takes care of necessary details. CO Loucks continues to pursue excellence in each of his tasks, double checking his work as he finishes each job. As a result of his thoroughness, he regularly completes his duties with a high level of accuracy that creates a safer working environment for both himself and his coworkers.


Virginia Shaw

Recently, Administrative Clerk Ginny Shaw was recognized for her orderliness, as she organizes her thoughts and surroundings for greater achievement. Ginny sets priorities, organizes her time, and strives to be as efficient as possible. She also continues to look for better ways to accomplish her goals, and adjusts her methods as needed.


Jordan Ryall

Corrections Officer Jordan Ryall was recognized for his enthusiasm, as he always expresses an interest and excitement in what he does. C/O Ryall continually does his best as he encourages and motivates others around him to do the same.


Matt Newman

Detective Matt Newman was recently recognized for his flexibility, as he consistently displays his ability to adjust to change with a good attitude. Detective Newman anticipates changes and adjusts his plan accordingly recognizing the new opportunities and other benefits that changes bring.


Bill Lynch

Patrol Training Officer Bill Lynch was recently recognized for his cautiousness, as he takes time to ensure the right decision is made or action is taken in everything he does. Officer Lynch is known to think before he acts, always using correct methods, and consistently follows safety rules.


Adam Leeper

Recently, Patrol Sergeant Adam Leeper was recognized for his tolerance, as he demonstrates respect for others who do not share his perspective. He is able to look beyond the appearance of others while also giving them room to grow. Sgt. Leeper also does this while maintaining his standards and responding appropriately to others.


Barb Fitzgerald

Corrections Officer Barb Fitzgerald was recently recognized for her determination, as she routinely overcomes obstacles in order to reach her goals. She faces any obstacle or challenge by continuing to move forward, without stopping. C/O Fitzgerald does this by dealing with distractions as they arise, refusing to back down from a challenge, and she will even change her tactics if needed to obtain her goals.


Jayna Chenoweth

Corrections Officer

was recently recognized for her availability as she is consistently willing to change her schedule and priorities to meet a need. She continues to find a way to help those around her, putting her team before her own priorities. C/O Chenoweth also completes these tasks willingly and joyfully, creating a positive atmosphere for her coworkers, and making each goal easier to attain.

Bette Blough

Detective Bureau Secretary Bette Blough was recognized for her loyalty, as she continues to demonstrate her commitment to others. She has always been committed to her work with the department and invests her time and energy with the people she encounters. Bette also anticipates potential difficulties and will go the distance to make sure everything is taken care of before they can arise.


Tammy Bline

Patrol Secretary Tammy Bline was recently recognized for her determination, as she continually overcomes any obstacle in her way in order to reach her goal. She faces each challenge with a purposeful outlook, dealing with distractions, changing her tactics as needed, and refusing to give up in order to complete her goal. Tammy’s continual determination, has established a reputation of being able to reach any goal that has been set for her.