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Goss settles in as 'new old chief' of Tulalip Tribal Police

After nearly two months back on the job, former and current Tulalip Tribal Police Chief Jay Goss is getting to know the community again. - Kirk Boxleitner
After nearly two months back on the job, former and current Tulalip Tribal Police Chief Jay Goss is getting to know the community again.
— image credit: Kirk Boxleitner

TULALIP — After six years in the role, Jay Goss retired as Tulalip Tribal Police chief in 2007, but two years later, he's back on the job.

Goss signed a three-contract with the Tribal government and resumed his duties Sept. 1, after the July 10 resignation of previous Tribal Police Chief Scott Smith. After nearly two months back in Tulalip, the "new old chief" reflected on what he'd missed while he was away.

Goss had wanted to take more time to spend with his family, but he missed the fulfillment and camaraderie that had come with serving as Tulalip Tribal Police chief.

"I enjoy the Tribal management style," Goss said. "This is a rewarding place to work."

Goss returned to a Tribal Police Department with four more officers than he'd left it with, as well as some new officers in place of his retired former coworkers. He's made a point to go on patrols with these officers, to get to know them on a more personal level, and he's found himself impressed with how capable, skilled, well-trained and community-oriented they are.

With only three years before he starts collecting Social Security, Goss has made it his mission to train his younger commanders to take his place. He wants his officers to continue to receive training above and beyond basic requirements, citing the FBI National Academy training of his new deputy chief, Carlos Echevarria, and he hopes their community spirit will continue to grow.

"Working with the Tribes, I can't count how many times I was thanked for what I do, or the number of hugs I received when I came back," Goss said. "At all the levels of law enforcement that I've worked at, nothing is more gratifying than what I'm doing now."

Goss pledged that the Tribal Police would continue to be present at community events, to work with other community organizations and to solicit input from community members.

"As police officers, we're part of this community," Goss said. "We can't separate ourselves from that, nor should we. Our strength is in our bonds."

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