COVINGTON -- When the votes were finally tallied Tuesday night just before midnight, Sheriff Ezell Brown received affirmation from Newton County voters of a job well done. With 23,763 votes counted, he won the race over contender Philip Bradford who had 18,510 votes.
Brown has had many accomplishments during his first term, including obtaining several federal grants, state accreditation and a successful public fundraising campaign to buy better bullet-proof vests for his officers.
He has always said that he has not achieved his success alone, but is quick to give credit to the 250 employees of the Sheriff's Office and their dedication.
Brown announced his intention to run for a second term in late 2011, saying he is still fighting the war against "the big three -- sex, drugs and violence."
Brown, a 38-year law enforcement veteran, came up through the ranks of the NCSO, holding numerous positions since coming to work there in 1978, including supervisor of the night shift of the Newton County Detention Center, investigator in the Criminal Investigations Division and tracking and monitoring sex offenders. The first dually-certified law enforcement and arson investigator in the county, he has more than 2,000 hours of documented training in various areas pertaining to law enforcement.
He had previously made an unsuccessful bid for the office in 1996.
Born in Early County in South Georgia, Brown attended elementary and high school and later furthered his education at Albany Technical College.
He moved to Newton County in 1973 and worked for the Covington Police Department before moving over to the NCSO.
He has been married to Janice Harris-Brown for 38 years and has three children and several grandchildren.