Meet the Candidates: Rick Sandoval - Yuma County Sheriff
The Yuma Sun is spotlighting the candidates ahead of the Nov. 6 general election. Check out past editions of Meet the Candidates online at www.YumaSun.com/Elections.
Name: Ricardo “Rick” Sandoval
Office running for: Yuma County sheriff
Family: Wife, Beatrice Sandoval; daughters Brenda Sandoval and Jane Sandoval; son Jason Sandoval
Education: Associate of arts in administration of justice, plus 2 years of university.
Employment: Retired from U.S. Department of Homeland Security
To what organizations do you belong? NAACP, Fraternal Order of the Eagles, Knights of Columbus, Fraternal Order of Border Agents, Arizona Sheriff's and County Attorney's Association
What in your past experiences helps qualify you for this seat? I was raised in Yuma. I am a Yuma High School/AWC graduate, with over 37 years of law enforcement experience and with 18 years of proven executive leadership experience. I am the most experienced and qualified candidate who can lead the sheriff's office to a productive, accountable and professional agency.
Experience: 1976-85 Yuma County Sheriff's Office, (YCSO) deputy sheriff, narcotics agent, patrol sergeant (awards received: Yuma County Chamber of Commerce Law Enforcement Officer of the Year-YCSO 1976-85, LULAC Arizona State Hispanic Law Enforcement Officer of the Year-YCSO); 1985-90, USAF/Office of Special Investigations (OSI) (awards received: OSI Special Agent of the Year 1986-87); 1990-2012, U.S. Customs Service, Department of Homeland Security special agent, resident agent in charge, assistant special agent in charge
If elected, what is the one issue on which you would focus to improve Yuma's quality of life? How? Safety and security through enhanced federal resources at no cost to the Yuma County taxpayer.
What do you think is the biggest challenge right now facing Yumans, and how would you change it? The economy is the biggest challenge to Yuma. I would prioritize the sheriff's resources through a threat risk analysis of the community needs.
What would you do to make government more accessible? I encourage more community-oriented policing, open two-way communication with all members of the community, by forming a committee made up of community members to address issues in their areas, for the purpose of enhancing and stream lining the efforts and resources of law enforcement and the sheriff's office.
Who is your personal hero, and why? My son, U.S. Army Sgt. Frank M. Sandoval (Kofa High School Class 1999). He is an American hero who gave his life for our freedoms. Sgt. Sandoval was credited with saving 30 soldiers, Operation Iraq Freedom. His actions earned him a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart. Sgt. Sandoval passed away June 13, 2007. My family honors him with the annual Sgt. Frank Sandoval Memorial Scholarship given to Kofa High School students.