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Gary Green Returns to Ferris State as New Public Safety Director, Chief of Police

Gary Green

Gary Green officially started as Ferris State’s Department of Public Safety's director and chief of police on Monday, Nov. 20.

After serving a little over a year as undersheriff in the Mecosta County Sheriff’s Department, Gary Green brings his three-plus decades of law enforcement experience to a new role as Ferris State University Department of Public Safety director.

Green first joined Ferris DPS as an officer in 2017 before he was promoted to captain and assistant director in May 2018. He came to Ferris State after serving 28 years with the Michigan State Police and retired as a lieutenant and Mount Pleasant’s assistant post commander.

While at MSP, Green was on the fugitive recovery team, was an auto-theft technician, part of the executive protection detail and served on the cold-case unit in addition to other assignments and details.

Green returns to Ferris State enthusiastic and optimistic about a new, forward-thinking emphasis on public safety under the leadership of President Bill Pink.

“I’m excited to be back. I was really excited when Captain Tim Jacobs filled me in on Dr. Pink’s emphasis on public safety and many things that the department and university were doing to enhance that emphasis,” Green said. “This emphasis on public safety is much needed. We are enhancing our cameras and adding to the number of cameras on campus and their capabilities, access and control.”

Green, the highest-ranking officer in DPS, noted that the work is already underway to enhance Ferris State’s emergency operations planning and to fill out the department’s staff.

“There’s excitement building within our agency,” he said. “I don’t know if that excitement has transferred to the greater campus yet, but it will. The people who work for this agency, including myself, are like the people in the community we serve. We have hopes, dreams, ambitions, fears and anxieties just like everybody else. We’re just people.”

Breaking down barriers is a point of emphasis for Green in strengthening public safety.

“This uniform we wear represents a job, it’s a calling, but we’re exactly like them. I will encourage our guys to interact with the students, staff and faculty,” he said. “This interaction and engagement are not necessarily in a law enforcement way, but more so to build relationships. As we get to know each other, we can work better together to keep our campus safe.”

Beginning his second stint at Ferris State, with a stop in between serving the county under Sheriff Brian Miller, Green brings a unique perspective relative to collaborative community policing.

“One of my beliefs is that, especially when you work in a smaller community, is that all the law enforcement agencies have to work together,” he said. “One of my benefits is I’ve worked for the Michigan State Police for 28 years – that works this area – I worked in the sheriff’s department and at Ferris State. Those connections and relationships make working collaboratively as a cohesive unit easier. I know I can pick up the phone and call somebody and they will send people.”

The Department of Public Safety currently features a director/chief of police, an assistant director/captain, two sergeants, seven officers, one dispatch specialist, student dispatch specialists and student cadets. 

Green officially started as Ferris State’s Department of Public Safety's director on Monday, Nov. 20.