By Kris Smith
With a combined near 35 years’ experience, The Navarro College Department of Public Safety is led by Chief Hank Bailey and Lieutenant David Arnett. The NCDPS is the 3rd largest department in Navarro County, coming in right behind the Corsicana Police Department.
Upon graduation from Corsicana High School, Chief Bailey began his career in law enforcement as a Reserve Deputy at the Navarro County Sheriff’s Office under the leadership of now retired Sheriff Les Cotten.
In 1993, he was hired at NCSO as a full-time deputy after his graduation from Navarro College Police Academy. During his tenure at the NCSO, Chief Bailey served Navarro County in many different departments, including SWAT.
Chief Bailey stated, “The original plan was a Texas State Game Warden. After unsuccessful attempts, I was led to reserve at the Navarro County Sheriff’s Department.” He remained at the NCSO for over 20 years until his retirement in 2015 at the rank of Patrol Captain.
Not one to stay still for long, the law enforcement veteran decided to accept a position at the Navarro College Waxahachie Campus, until his promotion to Navarro College Department of Public Safety Chief in 2020.
Always on duty, The Navarro College Department of Campus Safety’s responsibility is to keep the students, faculty, staff, and visitors safe and respond to any needs they may have. Chief Bailey stated, “As chief, it is my responsibility to enforce the laws and assist students as they navigate their college career.”
The Navarro College DPS is dedicated to enhancing the opportunity for students, staff and faculty to participate in the educational experience by providing a safe and orderly environment. For greater visibility and officer approachability, they utilize a Bicycle Unit during its daily patrol.
Not surprisingly, you may even see NCDPS officers assisting Corsicana Police Department or deputies from the Navarro County Sheriff’s Office if the need arises. All officers are Texas licensed peace officers and have the same authorities, powers, and privileges as other departments, including all streets and roads to which NC owns or leases.
Second in command, Lieutenant David Arnett had a similar experience as the Chief. Arnett began his law enforcement career under the guidance and leadership of Ret. Sheriff Les Cotten, as a reserve deputy while attending the Navarro College Police Academy in 1998.
Arnett stated, “Most little kids dream of becoming a firefighter or policeman. I was no different.”
Lt. Arnett has served the Navarro College community since accepting the officer position in 2009.
Navarro College provides behavioral mental wellness services at their BMWC Services Clinic, offering crisis counseling, individual counseling, mental health and medication, as well as drug and alcohol education and referrals. Lt. Arnett stated, “We utilize Navarro College’s Bulldog Mental Wellness Center and only send students to Dallas Behavioral Center as a last resort.”
The program offers in person, online and text counseling, 24 hours a day.
The NCDPS employs a total of 14 officers – 11 at the Corsicana campus and 3 in Waxahachie. Chief Bailey stated, “We are hiring two officers. One for the Corsicana campus and one for Waxahachie.”
Navarro College DPS offers competitive pay and benefits, and qualified candidates are encouraged to contact the NCDPS office for more information.