There’s a new sheriff in town at Miami Dade College’s North Campus—James Dobson has taken over as the new chief of Public Safety.
Dobson’s first day on the job was Nov. 12.
“I am joyed to be part of the largest College in the United States,” said Dobson, a Jackson, Mississippi native. “It is a great honor to be selected out of so many qualified applicants.”
Dobson, 42, brings with him more than 16 years of law enforcement experience. He started his career in the Florida Highway Patrol at the age of 25, where he worked for three years before moving on to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Dobson—who has a Bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff, and is also a graduate of the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy—performed in various capacities during an eight year stint at the FDLE.
He then became involved with the implementation of a brand-new police force in Doral, where he served for four years. His most recent job was as a lieutenant at Broward College—where he oversaw campus safety at five campuses.
Grant S. Gundle, Campus Safety Operations Captain at Broward College said that during his time at BC, Dobson was “an excellent supervisor and mentor to those assigned under his command, and an advocate of student success.”
During his time at BC, Dobson—a family man with five children and three grandchildren—says he fell in love with a different form of law enforcement.
“I find public safety in a college setting to be even more enjoyable than law enforcement because with the students and staff you get to see your impact to everyone sooner than later,” Dobson said.
North Campus’ Assistant Chief of Public Safety, Francisco Lizano, thinks Dobson’s “good knowledge” and “vast experience” will be a major asset to the college.
“[Dobson is] familiar with the campus environment, so I think that’s good. Especially [for] our campus, being the largest at Miami Dade,” Lizano said. “I think he’s going to bring a fresh perspective to the table.”
Having only recently started his tenure at North Campus , Dobson said he hasn’t had adequate time to figure out if he wants to implement new policies as far as campus safety goes. For now, he says, he is focusing on traffic enforcement on campus in an effort to make students commutes less stressful and to maintain a safe, secure campus.
“I feel with my vast experience within the different areas in law enforcement and my willingness to provide a safe environment for students, faculty and visitors, that I [will] be a great asset to the college,” Dobson said.