A Hidden Cornerstone for Community Safety: Florence Field Office

By Matthew Estes, Communications Director

Florence, Ala. – Tucked away at the top of Alabama, in a corner of the Lauderdale County Courthouse, can be found the Florence Field Office. Like its namesake in Tuscany, Italy, residents of the 10-times-smaller Alabama town are proud of their culture, landmarks, festivals, and history. Visiting the Florence Field Office provides an unmistakable sense the employees here serve as protectors of the community. They work behind the scenes with stakeholders and law enforcement agencies to maintain a model Alabama town.

Officer-in-Charge Jeremy Rice enjoys the peaceful scenery in Lauderdale County and fights to keep the tranquility. He attributes his success directly to his employees. “I work with a good team,” said Rice “They’re always here to help.” Rice mentioned the team is highly effective at completing reports on time and working as one unit.

OIC Rice, Officer Azizur Kazi, Officer Justin Poague, Senior Specialist Taqar Hallmark, Administrative Support Assistant III Jwana Griffin, and recent addition Administrative Support Assistant II Jessica McCoy have no interest in doing their jobs for fame or recognition, making their hidden location appropriate. They want to be a hidden cornerstone to keep a well-regarded community safe and happy. If content locals are the metric for success, it’s safe to say the Florence Field Office is doing a great job providing a vital service. 

Above all, this team is no stranger to interacting with the courts and other law enforcement agencies. During my visit, three attorneys walked in and knew each staff member by name. They were in and out with needed information in no time. The individuals in this office are true professionals who know what they’re doing and have earned the trust of their community.

District 3C Manager Sid Slate sums up their work ethic using the golden rule: “They treat others as they would like to be treated.” He complimented the office’s good management and professional yet personal relationships with local authorities. Slate also gave special recognition to the work the office does with the U.S. Marshals Service in Lauderdale County and beyond.

The Bureau has 62 field offices, serving all Alabama counties. Field offices function as a local base of operations for Probation and Parole Officers, specialists and other support staff. Officers are required to make various contacts with probationers and parolees based on their risk level. These contacts range from a monthly office visit for lower risk individuals to weekly office, home, employment and curfew checks for higher risk individuals. In addition, officers are tasked with various types of investigations requested by the Bureau or courts, as well as assisting other law enforcement agencies when needed.

Florence Field Office Staff
Senior Specialist Taqar Hallmark
Officer Justin Poague
Florence Field Office Exterior
Florence Field Office Entrance