The Public Information Office works tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure the media and agency effectively communicate with the public! The PIO office is tasked with reviewing and providing public records and information to local, state and national news media and setting up interviews between agency members and the news media. The team works closely with intelligence lead policing and social media members to get timely information out as quickly as possible!
“The PIO unit helps our citizens to understand various issues, hardships and success our agency members have in doing their jobs to protect citizens,” said Community Relations Director, Kevin Doll.
There are three Public Information Officers and the job isn’t just 9:00-5:00. Each week one member of the unit is on-call. They will go out to breaking news scenes to organize press conferences and help agency members address the press.
Breaking news is timely, so PIO’s get to the scene quickly, so they often times see aftermath of tragic crimes.
“It can be difficult to respond to scenes in which children have been victimized,” said Public Information Officer, Melanie Snow. “As a mother of two, those cases always stick with me and make me even more protective of my little ones.”
As a liaison between the Sheriff’s Office and media outlets, the PIOs are also responsible for attending community events and helping to spread the Sheriff’s Office message! In doing so, they often film, edit and create content for social media sites!
“I grew up in Pasco County and also live here,” said Public Information Officer, Amy Marinec. “I have a background in Journalism working in the Tampa news market for ten years, and I enjoy making a positive impact in the community I love through media engagement!”
The job is never the same. One day, the Public information office may be knee deep in public records, searching for statistics and numbers to give to reporters, while other days they are reporting to the scenes of shootings, sinkholes or car crashes.
The Unit works to ensure the public is safe through the dissemination of information around the clock! If you aren’t already a part of their efforts make sure to follow the Pasco Sheriff’s Office on Facebook and Twitter!
We hope you enjoyed getting to know the Public Information Office!