Georgia Southern University

Maj. Laura McCullough Appointed Interim Chief of Police at Georgia Southern University

Maj. Laura McCullough has been appointed Interim Chief of Police of the Georgia Southern University Office of Public Safety effective May 31, 2015 after longtime chief, Michael Russell announced his retirement.

Having served more than 34 years in law enforcement, Russell has been the Chief of Police for the University’s Office of Public Safety since 2009 and has been with the office since 1988. Under his leadership, the University experienced an overall reduction in crime including theft, and added 16 critical staff positions including 12 certified officers.

He was awarded the Alex K. Johnson Member of the Year Award by the Georgia Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators in 2011, received the Eagle Leadership Award in 2012 and the Commitment to Advocacy Award by the Georgia Southern Sexual Assault Response Team in 2013.

“It has been a privilege serving Georgia Southern University and this community,” said Russell. “I have had the pleasure of working along side many wonderful people including the other public safety officers over the years. I have no doubt that Maj. McCullough will carry on the mission of keeping this campus safe. Her professionalism and dedication is a tremendous asset to this University.”

Laura McCullough began her career with the Office of Public Safety in 2005 as a patrol officer and has since served as a patrol sergeant, criminal investigations captain and most recently assistant director, or major. She also is a 2013 graduate of the FBI National Academy, has participated in the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police Executive Training and also is a P.O.S.T. Certified Forensic Technician. McCullough holds a B.S. in education from Samford University, a M.S. in education from Georgia State University and a M.S. in event management from the University of Tennessee.

University President Brooks A. Keel believes McCullough will continue to uphold the safety standards of the Office of Public Safety as the University moves forward with protecting its campus community.

“It is a sad day for Georgia Southern to have Chief Russell leave his post as our Chief of Police, said President Keel. “We honor him for his many years with the University. He will always be part of the Georgia Southern family. I have every confidence that Maj. McCullough and the entire Office of Public Safety will continue to provide outstanding service to this community.”

Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers more than 125-degree programs serving more than 20,500 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement. Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered and hands-on approach to education.

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