Do The Right Thing, Especially When No One Is Looking
Hi! My name is Mike Cullen. I have lived in Northern Nevada since the early 1970s. My parents brought my sister and I here from the bay area specifically to enjoy the out doors and to grow up in a place that gave us the freedoms we still have today. My parents enjoyed the great outdoors fishing, hiking, exploring, camping and wanted to ensure that we would be able to grow up in a place that promoted our freedoms. I grew up in Minden, Nevada, specifically on Johnson Lane. As a typical kid I rode dirt bikes, bicycles, horses and drove my dads old trucks around the desert at 12 years old. My friends and I stayed out till the sun went down and had many sleep overs. I enjoyed team sports from little league to high school football but found that I enjoyed off road activities and riding dirt bikes more. I graduated from Douglas County High School in 1984 and worked for my dad for awhile as well as construction, digging ditches and various motorcycles shops which fueled my dirt bike passion.
However, I realized that it was time to pursue something that I had been interested in since childhood and that was criminal justice. In December of 1989 I interviewed at the Nevada State Prison and was hired on by January of 1990. I began taking criminal justice courses at Western Nevada Community College and joined the Carson City Sheriff’s Office Reserve Deputy program in 1992. I enjoyed the freedom that patrol brought over corrections and worked very hard at getting hired on by the Carson City Sheriffs Office. Luckily, I was able to be sponsored by the Carson City Sheriffs Office and to attend the High Sierra Academy at Truckee Meadows Community College (Class 1-94) but only after I left my job at the state in hopes of being hired on later. It all worked out and in August of 1994 I started full time at the Carson City Sheriff’s Office as part of a community policing funded grant. At the time, their were 5 of us that were hired on from a community policing grant. After completing the field training program we were assigned community policing programs which included setting up neighborhood watches, meeting with citizens and business owners and developing policing strategies to deal with known problems. For the first 6 months I walked a beat in downtown Carson City getting to know business owners and citizens. I am proud to say some of those relationships have lasted to this day.
This program was well received by the community and we created some great partnerships and were able to really work with community members. We didn't know at the time this program would serve the city well as the 1990's into the early 2000's were quite busy with a lot of changing times in Carson City. Looking back on those programs and what we were able to accomplish it was very good timing for the city to bring in that original community policing grant.
The 5 of us were eventually re-assigned to different beats and programs and I found myself assigned to patrol from 1995 through 1998. I began attending multiple training courses and soon was assigned as a Field Training Officer. Then briefly promoted to traffic and in 1998 I was promoted to the detective unit.
My time as a Detective was very involved and exciting, we had our fair share of crime and during this time I was able to create some great relationships with other officers and agencies that have continued to last throughout my career.
In 2003 I promoted to Patrol Sergeant and went straight back to patrol and traffic where we did double duty in traffic, patrol, and many special events. I began developing our traffic unit and creating policies and programs that are still in effect today.
Through the 2000's and into the early 20teens Patrol and Traffic were my main focus and job duties. Again working with the various communities inside Carson City to develop strategies to deal with everything from gang problems to traffic issues. I worked with many neighborhood watch programs over the years and we were able to create solid relationships with community members to put the right resources to work in the right areas. These were growing years for the city and I'm proud to have been part of the solution and was able to predict future concerns and address them with the support of the administration and the city so that we weren't always trying to react to crime and problems. We were always out ahead of the problems.
In 2017 I promoted to Administrative Sergeant with specific responsibilities in supervision of the motorcycle traffic unit, field training program, and supervision of patrol officers during special activities among other duties. I was able to bring in new grant opportunities and administer those grants creating solid relationships with other agencies statewide and companies that we would eventually purchase equipment through. I worked very closely with our volunteer programs from cadets to VIPS (Voluteers In Policing) and the Reserve Deputies developing procedures and plans so those units could be utilized in such a way as to bring their experiences and knowledge into the department to better help with the overall plan. I plan to bring these relationships to Storey County as well and develop new ones, if and when necessary, so that we cancontinue to grow and better serve the counties specific needs as these arise. Our Volunteer programs are so important especially in smaller communities like ours and they are vital to managing the needs of the community and the citizens.
Some of you know that one of my biggest passions in my job was attending police motorcycle riding competitions over the years. I am still an avid motorcyclist and enjoy riding whenever I can get out. I was always proud to represent Nevada and specifically Carson City, nationwide.
Most recently, I retired from the Carson City Sheriff’s Office with my focus on continuing in law enforcement and running for Sheriff here in Storey County. This was not not an easy decision but I felt it necessary. I found myself constantly wondering how what I was doing for Carson City would better serve Storey County. My focus was here in Storey County and not there.
My wife and I live in the heart of Virginia City and my wife owns and operates her own business. This is a dream she has had since she was very young and I'm very proud of her for accomplishiung her dream. We each have children from other marriages (9 total, with 6 grand children) and except for one, they are all grown now.
I'm still an outdoors kind of person and enjoy riding and racing motorcycles, driving my little off-road rock crawler, my 38 Ford hot rod, fishing, camping on occasion and spending time with family and friends. I'm also a bit of an artist and enjoy all forms of art.
This was originally going to be a short story about me, but I think it's better that you all know who I am and my history. You should also know that I'm very passionate about Storey County and the folks that live here. I only want whats best for our community and I will always work very hard to meet your needs and the needs of our county. I do have a tendency to wear my emotions on my sleeve but ultimatly I think that it is better that you know exactly what I think and where I'm coming from so that we can always have great communication. I truly care about this county and the safety and quality of life for the residents.
If I'm lucky enough to have your support and be able to continue in law enforcement as Sheriff of Storey County I will do everything humanly possible to ensure every contact with law enforcement is professional and every investigation is thorough and conducted properly. My promise to you is that if you need to call our office you will have complete confidence and trust in your Sheriff’s Department and me as your Sheriff. I sincerely appreciate your consideration to vote for me on June 14th for Storey County Sheriff.