A real trooper: Tanner brings quiet presence as GSP Post 3 commander
by Jessica Loeding
Jul 16, 2012 | 3501 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Sgt. Kyle Tanner, Commander of Georgia State Patrol Post 3 in Cartersville.
DAYTON P. STRICKLAND/The Daily Tribune News
Sgt. Kyle Tanner, Commander of Georgia State Patrol Post 3 in Cartersville. DAYTON P. STRICKLAND/The Daily Tribune News
A meeting with Sgt. Kyle Tanner leaves an impression -- one of a man who is soft-spoken but direct, a law enforcement leader outside the limelight.

Named the commander of Georgia State Patrol Post 3 in Cartersville in December 2011, Tanner oversees the new facility, which opened last summer off Ga. Highway 20 Spur. The post houses radio operators for Troop A, which covers 14 counties in northern Georgia, along with the roughly 20 troopers for Post 3 and additional staff.

Name: Kyle Tanner

Age: 40

City of Residence: Rockmart

Occupation: Georgia State Patrol trooper

Family: Wife and three kids

Education: Two years of college and many hours of law enforcement training

How did you come to be the Post 3 commander?

A: The former Post Commander retired, thus leaving a vacancy for the position. Through our promotions process and assessment I was on a list of eligible employees to apply. I then applied, interviewed and was promoted on Dec. 1, 2011.

There have been questions raised about the GSP working every accident -- among the concerns are the sometimes extended wait for a trooper and the presence of another agency who could handle the scene. Do you see this as a problem? And, if so, what would the solution be?

A: The department was created in 1937 as a support agency and not a primary response. We make our resources available to city and county law enforcement agencies to assist them in providing services to the motoring public. As a support agency, we work with local law enforcement to provide the best fit for their policing model.

The economic crisis has struck public service rather hard. How has the budget crunch affected GSP and Post 3?

A: In recent days, the governor and the Legislature have increased our budget.

What do you see as the biggest issue facing law enforcement, particularly the GSP?

A: Shrinking budgets and a lack of resources.

You've said you worked in Atlanta for some time and you've been on the road. What is the most memorable call or incident you've been involved in?

A: The most memorable would be an incident where a gunman was involved in multiple shootings in the Buckhead area. The suspect was located in Acworth, Ga., in which other troopers and I were able to assist. The news coverage and high profile-type incident still sticks with me.

If you could do anything else -- a dream job, if you will, what would it be?

A: I would be a college football coach. I just love the air surrounding college football and the level of competition and intensity.

What would people be surprised to learn about you?

A: I hope there would not be something surprising about me. I believe I am pretty straightforward with people and feel if they have met me, they would know what I am like and what I am about.

What makes Bartow County special?

A: Bartow County is comprised of many different types of people and many different types of land areas -- both rural and urban. Everywhere I go and the people I meet, no matter which category they may fall in, are always down-to-earth and friendly. There is a sense of community in Bartow County. Whether its local officials, other emergency personnel or just local residents, they want to be helpful and just plain friendly.

What is your favorite meal?

A: My favorite meal is roast beef, green beans, macaroni and cheese, coleslaw and rolls. My wife is an excellent cook and keeps our family taken care of with good, home-cooked meals.

If you were stranded on a deserted island, what three things could you not live without?

A: If I were stranded on a deserted island, as long as I had first and foremost my wife and kids -- if I don't have them, then not much else matters. Another thing would be a good, durable Bible so I could teach my family and gain the strength I needed to press on. The other thing would be a way to make some good coffee -- I like my coffee.