Sheriff Eric Scheffler has served as Atlantic County Sheriff since 2018.
To the citizens of Atlantic County;
I feel incredibly privileged and blessed to have served as your Sheriff over the last two years. I am committed to continuing our efforts to bring the community and law enforcement closer together through relationships. I have faith in creating positive and productive interactions and collaborations that I believe will build mutual trust and confidence in each other. The result will be an improved quality of life and enhanced feeling of safety for residents and visitors of Atlantic County, with increased efficiency and effectiveness with regard to our service to the community.
My vision encompasses three essential principles in improving safety and quality of life within Atlantic County. First, community engagement based on the needs of the community, which supports outreach initiatives. Next, professional development that focuses on training and education of Sheriff’s Office Personnel. Finally, promoting resiliency programs centered on wellness for the entire community.
During the past two years we have made significant forward progress that has been a great source of pride for my organization and staff. We have reallocated resources such as personnel re-deployment, and utilized technology to maximize efficiency saving taxpayer money while still expanding services. The Sheriff’s office has also conducted a budgetary analysis resulting in additional savings and give backs to the county coffers for my first two consecutive years in office, demonstrating a commitment to fiscal responsibility.
Through major partnerships and private/public collaborations, we have formed the Hope One Project and Mobile One Outreach Initiative that has proven to be one of the most highly successful community outreach initiatives in Atlantic County history. The program immediately influenced the level of service to community members who were suffering from the disease of addiction and/or mental health issues. We have strived to remove barriers to treatment and reduce the stigma historically associated with seeking help by those who may be in crisis.
One of the most significant funding and community engagement projects we have participated in is our grant partnership with the Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine. This collaboration resulted in the Sherriff’s Office receiving a four-year, two-million dollar federal grant to provide overdose prevention training for first responders. The program will train police, firefighters, casino and hospital security and emergency medical technicians throughout Atlantic County. It also will enable us to distribute the opioid overdose reversal drug, Naloxone and train overdose survivors and their families on its use.
Another topic that holds significant meaning to me is the support we offer to veteran’s issues. We have become intimately involved in collaborations with Veterans Smile Day, South Jersey Veteran’s Community Outreach Team, K-9 Warriors and South Jersey Veteran’s Center.
On the training front, we have implemented various new programs to address critical events and enhance the skill set of our employees that includes: tactical first aid, active shooter and enhanced emergency response protocols for our courts through the creation of the “Special Response Team”. Over the past two years in office, I have conducted over 100 lecturers teaching civilians on how to become their own first responder. This lecture series trains individuals on how to raise personal situational awareness and maximize survival rate from moment to moment during a critical incident.
School community safety is a grave concern for society in general and a high priority for the Sheriff’s Office as well. As an example, we have increased the number of School Resource Officers from one to six in schools in our county. The enhanced presence not only serves as an added security measure, a physical deterrent and an increased feeling of safety for students and employees, it also allows the staff to conduct advanced training for these officers and creates opportunities to engage the student body. These efforts will further produce trusting relationships between officers and the school community as a whole and facilitate long-lasting school community relations for future generations.
Additionally, I have mandated a wellness program which includes a foundational curriculum based on human resilience strategies. These are science/evidence based principles that address healthy coping skills for individuals that transcends the law enforcement profession into everyday life. My philosophy is simple: “A physically and mentally fit officer is a confident officer; A confident officer will have the skill set to make sound decisions and ultimately better serve the community”.
I am elated and proud to be able to report the aforementioned accomplishments of the Sheriff’s Office, but I know we have much more to achieve in the future. My promise to the taxpayers of Atlantic County is to continue to focus on community engagement, professional development of employees and a steadfast commitment to positively impact the quality of life for Atlantic County residents.
Sheriff Eric Scheffler is an Atlantic County native. He has lived, and worked here his entire life. Eric and his wife Maria currently reside in Northfield NJ with their family. Sheriff Eric Scheffler is a career police officer has dedicated his life to protecting our families and serving our community.