OPPORTUNITY ARISES … Steve Mendez, who moved up through the ranks over his twenty-one years on the PD to leave as sergeant, is now on patrol with Toledo Metroparks. He hopes in the future to have leadership opportunities and this change will help him learn a different perspective. He is seen here at the Stryker Village Council meeting on October 24, 2022 as his favorite chief, Steve Schlosser, explained to council why Mendez was leaving. (PHOTO BY REBECCA MILLER, STAFF)
By: Rebecca Miller
Sergeant Steve Mendez, who spent twenty-one years with the Stryker Police Department, has taken a position with Toledo Metroparks.
Mendez shared in an interview that his favorite years in Stryker PD were spent with present chief, Steve Schlosser, who became Stryker Police Chief in October 2010.
“Chief Schlosser has treated me as if I were a full-time officer instead of part-time,” Mendez said.
“He always encouraged me to go through training and was right there with me. He is fair to work for and a great boss.”
“I learned a lot and feel very ready for anything in my future because of him.”
His reason for leaving is that he feels the need at the age of 45, to have some different experiences that can help him in the area of leadership, which he hopes to be able to use in his future.
He applied at the sheriff’s department, but they were not hiring at the time and when this opening with Toledo came for $10 an hour more, plus the opportunity to grow, he took it.
After his first week on the new job, Mendez said that he is a little surprised by the way things are run in Lucas County.
“I expected it to be very organized and on top of stuff as they care for a larger and more diverse group of neighborhoods, but this week it has looked like things happen that would never be allowed in Williams County, or Stryker.”
“There is a lot of red tape…more politics and red tape. Right now, it is a little overwhelming and confusing as it is so different, but I’m sure I will get used to things soon.”
Mendez says he is hoping he can stay with Metroparks for at least a year, and is looking forward to getting his full uniform, his gun and his badge, which apparently, he cannot get until he is sworn in officially.
When Mendez attended Stryker Village Council meeting on October 24, 2022, he was assured by Chief Schlosser, Mayor Joe Beck and council members that he is always welcome to come back to Stryker and that they have greatly appreciated his service in their village.
Chief Schlosser pointed out that Stryker has become a sort of waystation for young police officers to try their wings, learn from some patient experienced trainers, and move on to greener pastures, so the fact that Mendez stood strong for twenty-one years and served this one community faithfully, has given Schlosser a great measure of encouragement.
Rebecca can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org