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Diversity

Officer Caitlin McGuire

Did you ever think you would be a police officer?

No. I have been interested in the Criminal Justice field since high school, but never thought I would take the role of “Police Officer” in it. Instead, I pursued a degree in Criminology because I wanted to learn about the sociological aspects behind crime, I hoped to study why offenders committed crimes, as opposed to being the one to arrest them for crimes committed. However, after college and my experiences interning for and working at the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, I decided I wanted to experience the ‘sworn’ role I never thought I would be interested in. I’ve been a Police Officer now for almost 4 years and it has been a fantastic and exciting challenge, I’m glad I opted for it otherwise I would have missed out.

Officer David Sorrell

I would like to start by saying; I didn't think I would be a police officer when I was growing up. I always wanted to be a pro football player. While I was growing up I had no reason to believe that my dream would not come true. Out of high school I received a football scholarship to Southwest Texas State University. While attending SWTSU, I changed my major from physical education to criminal justice. I decided to concentrate on corrections after most of my close teammates started criminal justice degrees. While taking classes I had a teaching assistant that was a police officer at UT. The teaching assistant got me and some other football players interested in the police force at UT. I never planned on becoming a police officer but being taught by the officer from UT changed my mind. I later accepted a job with the University of Texas Police and I am glad to say that I just celebrated my 27 year with the department. I guess what I am saying is, keep your options open when thinking about a law enforcement career because the benefits can be very rewarding.

Officer Adrian Passdar-Shirazi

My name is Adrian Passdar-Shirazi and I am a new officer here at UTPD. I have considered a career in law enforcement since I graduated high school but I was given an opportunity to attend UT Austin so I did. I was originally looking into pre-pharmacy but switched to chemistry after my first semester. I graduated with my B.S. in Chemistry in May 2008. After I graduated I tried to combine Chemistry and Law Enforcement by pursuing a career in Forensics. I worked in various labs not related to Forensics but finally landed a job working for DPS in their Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) laboratory. I worked there for almost two years before I applied and was accepted into the UT Policing Academy. I recently graduated from the academy in December 2011 and I am currently going through the PTO program. I enjoy what I have seen so far and I am looking forward to what the future holds for me here as well.

Officer Sharice Crank

I was born in Albany, New York and received my BA in Sociology. I was going to get into teaching out of college but I felt it was my duty to serve my country after 911 occurred. I served in the US ARMY, Operation Iraqi Freedom. I wanted to pursue a career in law enforcement after I got out of the ARMY. So, I moved all the way to Texas to become a police officer with Dallas Police. I love being a police officer, because the career allows me to serve my country on a smaller scale. I am the only person in my family working in the Law enforcement career field. I love helping others and even more I love being able to make the people living in the community feel safe and secure. I would not choose another profession, I can't see myself doing anything else but being a police officer. It is the greatest job in the world and the most rewarding.

Officer Tracy Weems

Many ask why I would return to being a patrol officer after retiring with 20 years of service and rising to the rank of Commander; “Because I am not finished serving” is my answer. The University of Texas (Austin) PD provides me an opportunity to continue serving in a progressive department and diverse community. I am able to bring my years of training, supervision, and leadership skills to a department that honors my prior service with genuine appreciation while returning to the reason we all become police officers, the fun of serving our community as a first responder. I have served in many capacities in my career (SWAT, Bomb Squad, Internal Affairs), but the most rewarding has always been in wearing the uniform of my department while being the first contact many in the community will ever have with the Police.

Detective Michael Riojas

I always thought I would go to work for DPS as a State Trooper. So yes, I always knew I would be a police officer somewhere. I served as an electrician in the Navy. I have worked for UTPD since 1990, I started out as a Guard Officer writing parking tickets. 5 years later I went to and graduated the System Police Academy. I worked patrol for 6 ½ years. In 2001 I was assigned to the Criminal Investigations Unit as a Detective. The reason I choose law enforcement was because law enforcement has been a career that I saw as a way to helping others when they are in need and it was a way to give back to the area in which you live.

Sergeant Wayne Coffey

I came to UT Police after playing professional football in the National Football League (NFL) and Arena Football League (AFL). My father-in-law, Guard Ira Guyton recruited me to work at UT. I have been with UTPD for 16 years. My job at UT gives me the opportunity to take my daughter Kennedy to school every morning, head over to the golf course once a week to play golf with some retired police officers or take Tru, my Belgian Malnois for a run. I am married to Natalie Coffey and my son Spencer Coffey is a PhD student at UC Santa Cruz. My favorite part of the job is the work I get to do as a certified Drug Recognition Expert (DRE). This work includes a drug and alcohol workshop training for the cadets at the UT Police Academy. UTPD provides an excellent benefits package and numerous training opportunities. I have been certified for Bike Patrol, Special Response Team, Community Policing, and a First Responder.

Lieutenant Dennis Chartier

I am currently in charge of all special events. This involves assigning overtime for over 2600 events per year. I am also the department’s Internal Affairs investigator. I got into police work late in life compared to most. I received a B.A. in English in 1977. I was involved in the construction industry throughout my school years and went into business for myself after college. I worked as a contractor and sub-contractor for several years. I finally entered police work in 1991 when I joined UTPD.

Captain Julie Gillespie

I never dreamed I would be a police officer. I decided in second grade I would be a teacher. I attended The University of Texas at Austin with a degree in Education, specifically Kinesiology. I wanted to be a basketball coach all my life! While attending UT, I decided I really wanted to stay in Austin and teaching jobs were hard to come by here. A friend of mine worked at UTPD and asked if I ever thought about a job in law enforcement. I applied for a non-commissioned job to see if I would like it. When I applied the recruiter tried to talk me into applying for a police officer, but I had no idea if it would be something I would enjoy. Twenty-six years later I find myself one of two Captains in the same department I started as a non-commissioned security guard / dispatcher.