News Column

Sheriff's office spokesman retires

August 6, 2014

By Lauren Pack, Journal-News, Hamilton, Ohio



Aug. 06--HAMILTON -- Sgt. Monte Mayer's last day as the Butler County Sheriff's Office public information officer was a whirlwind as he juggled local and national media clamoring for comment from his outspoken boss, Sheriff Richard Jones.

"Really it's fitting," Jones said with a laugh. "That's the way he started out."

Mayer, 62, a native of Hamilton, spent several years in the banking and finance business before following his father and grandfather's footsteps into law enforcement at the age of 39.

On Wednesday, Mayer retired after 22 years as a deputy, with 12 of those years as PIO.

In addition to his duties as public information officer, Mayer has also served as a corrections officer, detective, and supervisor in court services, sexual oriented offender section, CCW registration and the civil unit.

"I like to think it is because I was so good at many things, but it is possible they were just trying to find something that I could possibly do," Mayer said with a chuckle. "Really what I liked most is I got to do lots of things and never got stuck in one thing ... never got pigeon-holed."

Mayer said his years of working with the media have been positive and opened him up to a whole world that he would never have been exposed to.

With the outspoken Jones often catching the national media's attention, Mayer said he learned how to accommodate the needs of that media arm.

"It is a whole different animal," he said, "And really kind of fascinating."

Mayer said his immediate retirement plan is to spend more time with his wife, children and grandchildren.

"I know at some point I will get bored and I am not saying no to anything job-wise," Mayer said. But he added he will not return to law enforcement.

"It's going to be something totally different," he said. "Maybe do a little writing of my own."

In his parting words to area journalists, Mayer said, "I am totally convinced the media is not nearly as bad as the reputation they get. It has been a pleasure."

Jones said it takes a special kind of person and deputy to keep up with him and to take care of the needs of local and national media.

"Especially when you have someone as outspoken as me," the sheriff said. "You really never know until you try them out what will happen. Monte grew into the job right away. I hate to see him go. I am going to miss him greatly."

Taking over as public information officer is Sgt. Melissa Gerhardt, who joined the sheriff's office in 1996. She has served as a corrections officer, road deputy and detective.

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(c)2014 the Journal-News (Hamilton, Ohio)

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Source: Hamilton Journal News (OH)


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