Mesa County’s Sheriff to Step Down, Takes New Role at Hospital

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MESA COUNTY, Colo. — Community Hospital is pleased to announce Matt Lewis as the new Director of Safety and Security. Matt has worked at the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office for 25 years and has served as the Mesa County Sheriff since January 2015. Matt earned his bachelor of science degree in criminal justice from Colorado Technical University in Colorado Springs and attended the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy in 2017 in Quantico, VA. Matt has decades of experience in law enforcement and his knowledge and expertise in public safety are unmatched in our community. Matt will join Community Hospital on Monday, August 9, 2021.

In this role, Matt will lead Community Hospital’s safety and security efforts and initiatives. Matt will report directly to Joe Gerardi, Chief Operating Officer/Chief Nursing Officer.

“The safety of our patients, visitors, staff, and providers is of utmost importance to our Board of Trustees, Foundation Board, and Administration,” said Chris Thomas, President, and CEO for Community Hospital. “Community Hospital has experienced exponential growth over the past several years and having a strong safety and security program is essential as we continue to navigate these uncertain times. Our community has been incredibly fortunate to have someone of Matt’s caliber leading law enforcement operations at the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office and we are confident Matt will prove to be a valuable asset to Community Hospital as he endeavors into this new role,” added Thomas.

“I am excited to collaborate and work closely with everyone to expand upon the safety and security program already in place at Community Hospital,” said Matt Lewis. “I look forward to continuing my public safety career in a challenging and diverse environment,” added Lewis.

Community Hospital is a full-service, acute care hospital licensed for 60 beds. As part of the Colorado West Healthcare System, Community Hospital is a Level III Trauma Center that offers full outpatient diagnostic services and inpatient care for the Western Slope region of Colorado and eastern Utah. Community Hospital brings together expert staff and world-class technology in a healing, family-centered environment.

For information on the programs and services provided by Community Hospital, please visit www.YourCommunityHospital.com or call 970-242-0920.

Message from Sheriff Matt Lewis: I have announced my intention to retire from the Office of Mesa County Sheriff.  If I could sum up everything I would like to convey to this community it would simply be, thank you.   When I arrived here so many years ago to attend what was then Mesa State College, I fell in love with this area and community.  As a young man, I joined the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office as a way to invest and give back to this community.  That office has been my home for the past 25 years. I have truly enjoyed the time I have spent here and love the people I have been able to serve alongside.  Every single day I remain amazed at the dedicated and talented employees and volunteers that sacrifice so much in the service of this community.  Many people will never know what they experience and endure daily to keep this community safe.  It has been my honor and privilege to serve alongside and lead such remarkable men and women.   As I retire from the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office, I will be forever grateful for the trust placed in me by this community.  Being elected as your sheriff is an incredible honor and responsibility I have taken very seriously.  Providing leadership to our community, the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office, the criminal justice system, and the state has been the focus of my time and efforts.  I am very proud to be part of a community that shows such support toward its public safety personnel.  With your support and trust, we have been able to accomplish some incredible things.  It is humbling to reflect on the love and support we experienced after the tragic murder of Deputy Derek Geer. Although it was one of the darkest and most difficult things we have ever experienced, the outpouring of community support truly carried us through those times.   Some of my proudest moments include the passage of Mesa County’s public safety sales tax which fundamentally changed the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office by bringing the resources needed to address the myriad of issues this community faces.  We have been able to increase the number of staff and provide better service to this and surrounding areas on a daily basis.  We have created specialized units designed to address criminal and quality of life issues impacting neighborhoods across the county.  Some of these units work to address our most serious offenders, others work on mental health and quality of life issues that may or may not be criminal in nature but are severely impacting residents in a particular area.  We have worked hard to take a more holistic approach to public safety by addressing underlying issues of concern and actually solving problems rather than merely continuing to respond to them time and time again. None of our successes happened without partnering with our residents, non-profit organizations, local businesses, and public safety partners at the local, state, and federal level.  It has been amazing to see what we can accomplish when we come together, roll up our sleeves, and find ways to get things done rather than focusing on why it may be difficult.  While we have achieved many successes, there will always be work to be done and I want this community to know I have an immensely talented group of leaders at the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office that will continue to relentlessly serve this community.   My decision to retire is not based on anything other than what is good and right for my family.  They have sacrificed and supported me without wavering through all the twists and turns that life can throw at you.  I would not be the person I am today without them and I would be remiss if I did not take this opportunity to publicly thank them for their steadfast love, patience, and support. As I retire from the Mesa County Sheriff’s Office, I will be joining another amazing group of people at Community Hospital.  I am excited to be joining another organization with a long and proud history of investment in this community.   Thank you for allowing me a wonderful 25 years of service to this community and I look forward to being able to continue to invest in the people and place I love in a different way. – Mesa County Sheriff Matt Lewis

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