And then there were 4 – Democrat throws his hat into the ring for Walton County Sheriff

by chris bridges - the walton tribune

It appears the 2024 race for the Walton County Sheriff ’s Office will not be officially decided until the general election.

While three Republicans had previously declared for the seat, Democrat Toyin Wakil Ola-oluwa has announced he will run for the open seat as a Democrat. Sheriffs in Georgia run on a partisian basis.

“With over three decades of dedicated service in law enforcement, my commitment to public safety is unwavering,” Ola-oluwa said.

Toyin Wakil Ola-oluwa

The Democrat’s journey in law enforcement began in July 1989 when he joined the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office as a detention officer. Through the years, he steadily progressed his career through roles, each carrying increasing responsibilities. He spearheaded the operations of the state’s largest adult pretrial facility, managing its overall operations.

“With an average of approximately 2,200 inmates within a capacity of 3,800 beds, my leadership extended to overseeing the Jail Division operations and supervising the Field Division, Courts and Administrative Division,” Ola-oluwa said. “In this capacity, I held the reins of the Human Resources Section and the Office of Professional Standards, culminating in my retirement as a Major.”

After his retirement in May 2010, he took on the role of Reserve Section commander. Collaborating with other retired officers from local agencies, the team volunteered time across multiple sections of the sheriff ’s office, filling in critical gaps and participating in various tasks including funeral escorts and community service details. The proactive involvement established a strong bond with the community, fostering trust in the sheriff ’s office, he said.

Ola-oluwa said his qualifications include certifications in basic law enforcement, jail management and supervision and general instruction as accredited by Georgia P.O.S.T. Additionally, he said he is an accomplished academic, holding a Ph.D. degree in business management from Touro University Worldwide, a master’s degree in Organization Leadership/Criminal Justice Leadership from Waldorf University, and a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Columbia Southern University.

“Beyond my law enforcement career, I am also a local business owner in Loganville,” Ola-oluwa said. “My roots lie in humble beginnings, and my dedication to public service has grown stronger. With a loving family, including a supportive spouse and four accomplished children by my side, my commitment to law enforcement has spanned 34 years. I am eager to continue this service journey by seeking the esteemed position of Walton County Sheriff.”

As a candidate, he said he stands for enhancing public safety, promoting community engagement, and up-holding the principles of fairness and justice.

“I look forward to connecting with you, the residents of Walton County, and together, building a safer and stronger future for our community. While he said he understands Walton County is a heavily Republican county, that is not persuading him from running.

“Our strategy will be to campaign door to door as many as possible, and use mailers, radio stations, local newspaper and possibly TV advertisements,” the Democratic candidate said. “We will use all available means to reach the citizens of Walton county and reiterate why we our policies are better than our opponents.”

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