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Posted on: September 27, 2022

Gaston County Police Chief Announces Transition and Work on School Safety Plan

Chief Joseph Ramey

GASTONIA, N.C. – Gaston County Police Chief Joseph Ramey announced today his plan to transition to a specialized role focused on school safety due to his impending retirement. The County will conduct a nationwide search for the next individual to lead that department.

Once a new chief is named, Ramey will fully transition to that special assignment.

“It’s time to give someone with fresh ideas and energy the opportunity to lead the Department,” Ramey said. 

County Manager Dr. Kim Eagle thanked Ramey for his career of service to the people of Gaston County, and said the work to find his successor will be no small task.

“Chief Ramey has served the citizens of Gaston County with integrity and distinction,” Eagle said. “Finding the next individual to lead our fine men and women in law enforcement will take a thorough search and a thoughtful process to ensure our next chief continues our tradition of excellence in public service.”

During his tenure as chief, Ramey twice oversaw the agency’s re-accreditation, the opening of the New Animal Care and Enforcement Shelter, the founding of Recovery Court, implementation of body worn cameras and a new public safety radio system (Next Gen911), expanded the School Resource Officer program, and created a successful drug diversion pilot program. He is also responsible for establishing the Buie Scholarship for minority students in partnership with Belmont Abbey College.

Ramey has worked for more than 28 years at the Gaston County Police Department, including the last 7 as chief. He has served on many programs and boards during his tenure such as Chairman of the Juvenile Crime Prevention Council, Least of These Carolinas, Chair of Partnership for Children, Board member for Partner’s Health, and Chair of the Gaston Substance Abuse Coalition.

He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy class 257, the Administrative Officers Management Program class 50 through NC State and a graduate of Leadership Gaston.

Chief Ramey wishes to thank his wife, Dr. Joy Cole, for her love and support for their 26 years together, especially for enduring those late-night calls and being the wife of a police officer. He wishes to thank his son Aaron, other family members and friends for their support and especially his Administrative Assistant Gail Page for her work, along with each of the men and women who have served as assistant chiefs under his watch. He also wants to recognize former Chief James Buie for his mentorship and friendship for the past 28 years.

“It has been my highest honor and privilege to serve the citizens of Gaston County,” Ramey said. “To the men and women of the Gaston County Police Department, thank you from the bottom of my heart for the opportunity to be your Chief, you are the finest group of men and women to work alongside!”  

If you or someone you know may be interested in the position of Chief of Police, please review the Chief of Police Brochure (PDF)

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