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Sheriff Adam Fortney: His achievements over the last four years

SNOHOMISH COUNTY—In preparation for incoming Sheriff-elect Susanna Johnson and in recognition for his dedicated leadership, commitment, and service as its 32nd elected Sheriff, the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office on Saturday posted a press release summarizing the contributions of Sheriff Adam Fortney over the last four years.

For his last week as Sheriff, Fortney filled in for a South County graveyard sergeant, so the sergeant be available to help with the Explorer’s Academy in Yakima. The academy is a volunteer law enforcement training program for young adults interested in the profession to gain firsthand knowledge and work side-by-side with police officers.

Adam Fortney
Sheriff Adam Fortney’s last week as Sheriff filling in for a south county graveyard sergeant. SOURCE: Sheriff Adam Fortney 

Sheriff Fortney joined the Sheriff’s Office in 1996 after serving in the U.S. Navy. Fortney served on patrol, SWAT, Honor Guard and K-9 before being promoted to sergeant in 2014. In this role, he led the busiest patrol crew in Snohomish County.

Adam Fortney
Sheriff Adam Fortney

Sheriff Fortney was sworn in on December 30, 2019, as the 32nd elected Sheriff of Snohomish County. He led the office through unprecedented times, facing a global pandemic, nationwide civil unrest, and the implementation of new state laws. Throughout his tenure, Sheriff Fortney demonstrated unwavering dedication, navigated challenging times, and initiated impactful community-focused programs.

Sheriff Fortney worked to foster unity within Snohomish County by enhancing transparency and accountability. In 2020, he initiated an internal work group focused on addressing racial inequities, aiming to bridge gaps, diminish biases, and promote meaningful interaction between law enforcement and the community. In 2021, Sheriff Fortney established a Sheriff’s Community Advisory Committee, meeting quarterly to offer insights, expertise, and personal perspectives to improve how the Sheriff’s Office engages with and serves the community.

Under Sheriff Fortney’s leadership, the first crime data dashboard was created to allow residents real-time crime statistics in their neighborhoods. In 2022, Sheriff Fortney implemented body worn cameras agency-wide to increase transparency and officer safety. That same year, he kicked off the largest community partnership street fair in south Snohomish County. This annual event saw more than 2,000 attendees.

Adam Fortney
Third annual community partnership street fair in south Snohomish County in August of 2023. SOURCE: Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office.

Earlier this year, after working in partnership with business owners and community members for the past two years, Sheriff Fortney opened a new Mariner Square Substation at 128th and 4th Ave W to increase deputies’ presence in the area and help reduce crime. In addition, Sheriff Fortney and his command staff spearheaded the efforts for a brand-new south precinct location, scheduled to open in mid-2024.

In December 2023, following three years of dedicated efforts, the office successfully completed the mock assessment for WASPC Accreditation and is set to become an accredited law enforcement agency in January 2024.

Adam Fortney
Third graduation ceremony of the Lead the Way program. Lynnwood Times | Mario Lotmore.

Notably, one of Sheriff Fortney’s proudest achievements is his LEAD The Way program he developed for struggling youth in Snohomish County. The 8-week course, centered on Leadership, Encouragement, and Direction, empowered students with life skills, decision-making, and accountability. Nearly 40 students, alongside their families, graduated from the program, leaving a lasting imprint on their lives.

SOURCE: Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office

4 thoughts on “Sheriff Adam Fortney: His achievements over the last four years

  • Pingback: Susanna Johnson sworn-in as Snohomish County Sheriff - Lynnwood Times

  • It still gives me pause that he pointedly refused to enforce laws to reduce viral transmission in the early days of Covid. It reeked of support for individual rights AT THE EXPENSE OF THE RIGHTS OF HIS COMMUNITY.

    • You are exactly right Mike! What we saw there was absolutely disgusting! And probably unconstitutional. The U.S. and WA State Constitutions are full of examples of COMMUNITY RIGHTS, but who ever heard of an individual right? That Sheriff is nuts. Thanks for your rare intelligent take Mr. Matusky.

    • What laws? Please give us the WAC.


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