Brian Schlueter retires after serving Otter Tail for 23 years
Brian Schlueter, Otter Tail County’s Sheriff for twenty-three years will retire in January.
Schlueter devoted his life to public service with forty-four years in law enforcement.
In all his years of law enforcement he maintained a deep sense of compassion. Schlueter’s aim, ‘Protecting a Great County’ is proudly displayed on patrol vehicles.
Schlueter grew up in Fergus Falls and left to pursue his interest in law enforcement at Michigan State where he earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice. He served in a variety of cities and circumstances from a busy community in Washington to rural Otter Tail County. He said he has worked with the finest people here and will miss working beside them.
In Schlueter’s career with Otter Tail County he has transformed the Sheriff’s Office. He established state of the art law enforcement training, equipment and facilities and as a result the Otter Tail County Sheriff’s Office is well respected throughout Minnesota and the country.
He oversaw the design and construction of the Sheriff’s Operations Center in Ottertail, he implemented equipment upgrades and invested in high quality training for his staff. The centrally located Operations Center houses the Patrol Division and their equipment and well as Water Patrol and the Investigation Division. The facility also serves as a training center and in the event of an emergency can operate as an Emergency Operation Center for the region. Under Schlueter’s leadership, the dispatch center’s equipment has been upgraded using cutting edge technology to better serve the people of Otter Tail County.
“Otter Tail County Sheriff’s Office hires good people and provides some of the best training for its staff of any county in Minnesota,” remarked Schlueter.
One might imagine that a long career in law enforcement would take its toll on a positive attitude but not for Schlueter. The challenges of law enforcement have reinforced Schlueter’s belief in the importance ‘having a heart for people.’
Through his career he has seen the changes in society and the impact of social breakdowns. Increased addiction to methamphetamines and heroin and the increasing numbers of cybercrimes have impacted how law enforcement carry out their work.
Finding care for those with mental health problems has now become an increasing need within the Sheriff’s Office.
“You never know what difference you will make,” he said, “I like to see people make it.”
Barry Fitzgibbons was elected as the new sheriff and will begin his service on January 7th, 2019.