There’s a new chief in town

Published 2:12 pm Friday, August 2, 2013

Georgiana Mayor Jerome Antone, left, swears in new police chief Isaac Ward, center, as former chief James Blackmon presents Ward with a chief’s badge. (Advocate Staff/Andy Brown)

Georgiana Mayor Jerome Antone, left, swears in new police chief Isaac Ward, center, as former chief James Blackmon presents Ward with a chief’s badge. (Advocate Staff/Andy Brown)

For the first time in nearly three decades, the City of Georgiana has a new police chief.

On Thursday, Isaac Ward replaced longtime chief James Blackmon as head of the department. Blackmon has been on the force for 42 years, serving the final 28 years as chief.

He announced his retirement in June and Ward, a 10-year veteran of the department, was appointed as his replacement.

“It’s a big honor and a big responsibility to be named chief,” Ward said. “… Chief (Blackmon) has been here for a long time and he’s been a good chief. He was the kind of chief that if one of his officers had a problem they could come to him. He always looked out for his officers and did whatever he could to help. I hope to be the same way.”

Ward, a Georgiana native, said being able to lead his hometown police department made the appointment even more special.

“It’s a great feeling to be able to be chief here in Georgiana,” he said. “I’ve always wanted to be a police officer. My dad was a police officer in Greenville, McKenzie and Georgiana, so grew up around it. It’s the life that I knew, and it’s always what I wanted to do as long as I can remember. I’m very thankful to have this opportunity.”

Blackmon will remain with the police department on a volunteer basis.

“I’m looking forward to retirement, but I’m not ready to go home and sit in a rocking chair,” he said. “I’m still going to be around, and if the city or the department needs me I’ll be there to help.”