While we all know TV and books aren’t true representations because extra drama and contrived plots can play fast and loose with reality, we also know that it takes a team of trained professionals to fight crime and administer justice.
It’s hard, stressful but necessary work. And rewarding, too, say those on the front lines locally. And it takes special women to do this kind of work.
So that’s why our lineup of showcase portraits in this summer edition of Magnolia, which exists to celebrate our lives as women, spotlights women in local law enforcement and criminal justice.
From the judge doling out justice from the bench ... to the court clerk and her team ... to the legal eagles prosecuting and defending cases ... to the investigators and patrol officers investigating or preventing crimes ...to the 911 officers who talk folks through emergencies and dispatch help ... to the clerks and administrative assistants who keep departments on track. You all are part of the criminal justice system that exists to keep our community safe.
Decades ago it used to be deemed “men’s work,” but these days there are hundreds of women involved in the local system, taking our calls, patrolling our neighborhoods, advocating for victims, collecting evidence in crimes, building and trying cases in the courtroom and managing the reams of paperwork involved.
No, the system is not perfect. Yes, there are cases that get derailed and people who go astray. But like any profession, or people in general, there are good and bad examples.
But law enforcement and criminal justice and their affiliated agencies are noble professions. And it’s worth honoring those who train hard and then do the work day in and day out. Those I know — and those I’ve just met through these portraits — are passionate about what they do. They love serving and helping people and they get frustrated by the cycles that often have decent people caught up in very difficult situations.
Those fighting crime on the front lines are very brave indeed. They take their vows — to “protect and serve” and to “truly and honestly, justly and uprightly” conduct themselves — to heart. And those in the support roles are vital to bolstering the justice system at all levels.
So please join me in saluting not only the women featured here in Magnolia, but all of the women (and men too) who ensure law and order here in Greater Rome.
Take a behind-the-scenes look at the Magnolia portrait photo shoots