ELIZABETHTOWN — New Elizabethtown Police Chuief Tony Parrish spoke to he Elizabethtown Kiwanis Club at its monthly meeting on Tuesday.
Parrish was officially sworn in as the new chief of police on April 1, but is not new to law enforcement. He told the group when he was a boy he dreamed of being a Highway Patrol officer — which he eventually joined in Lumberton in 1990.
In 2011, Parrish was transferred to Columbus and Bladen counties to run those two county departments. He retired from his career as a trooper and has joined the Elizabethtown Police Department as their chief.
Since Parrish had some leave and vacation time as a trooper he has been volunteering his time from February to April this year at the local police department.
“It’s a great town and pretty town. I’m excited about the job,” Parrish said about his new place of employment and career.
Parrish told the group there will be some changes, including a change in uniforms. Light grey and dark grey, a look similar to the Highway Patrol uniforms, are what the team decided to change their look to with a diplomatic decision making process according to Parrish.
The town currently has 16 sworn positions, but the new leader has asked for two more position.
Parrish announced the department will have a new website and Facebook page to help people find, reach out and get involved with them.
“I will have an academy to help teach the public about what we do,” Parrish promised. “We want a two-way street between the residents and the police department.”
Kiwanian Bruce Bourbor gave Parrish a box of rulers to give out to children at the upcoming Elizabethtown Police Department’s annual children’s event. The 10th annual Kids Appreciation Day will be held on Saturday, May 7, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.
The club also took care of some business at their meeting. A committee was formed to work on a fundraiser.
Dr. Lisa Bryan gave an update on the Kiwanis One Day and the club’s trip to the Boys and Girls Homes in Lake Waccamaw.
Kiwanians also named Charlotte Smith the Kiwanis Club member of the year.