The 100 sheriffs in the state of North Carolina do more than just catch bad guys and protect county residents – they also collectively have a lot of say when it comes to shaping the state’s laws and funding decisions enacted by the NC General Assembly.

To fight crime and have influence over elected leaders, the sheriffs across the state like to get together several times a year, formulate strategy and act as a cohesive unit.

As part of that effort, in late July, the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association hosted sheriffs, sheriffs’ personnel and their families from across the state for the group’s Annual Business Conference.  Among other business, the association decides its leadership for the coming 12 months.

The Annual Business Conference is also a chance for sheriffs and top sheriffs’ staff to gather for “networking, panel discussions, and training programs which cover a variety of topics related to law enforcement.”

At the just-held 2023 incarnation of the event, one of the major topics covered was the Sheriff’s Department’s role in school safety and shooter response procedures.

Attendees also heard presentations from guest speakers and attended a number of meetings during the conference.

The Association elects new Executive Committee officers at the annual conference each year. This year’s elections resulted in five sheriffs being elected to new offices:

  • President – Sheriff Darren Campbell, Iredell County
  • First Vice President – Sheriff Mike Roberson, Chatham County
  • Second Vice President – Sheriff Ricky Buchanan, McDowell County
  • Third Vice President – Sheriff Clee Atkinson, Edgecombe County
  • Treasurer – Sheriff Van Shaw, Cabarrus County

Outgoing Association President Charles Blackwood of Orange County will now take over the role of Chairman of the Association’s Executive Committee.

Campbell, the newly elected association president, stated in a press release after being elected that he hopes he can help increase the safety of people in the state and also represent the interests of the association well,

“The Annual Business Conference is always an excellent opportunity for sheriffs to get together to discuss important issues we are facing, network, and conduct Association business,” he said.

He added, “I am excited for the opportunity to serve as the President of the North Carolina Sheriffs’ Association and hope to help enhance public safety in our communities while representing the sheriffs of North Carolina.”