Sonoma County’s sheriff oversight body IOLERO, has seen a number of changes recently. Including a new community engagement manager.
With a degree in criminal justice from Sonoma State in hand, Lizett Camacho said she saw the writing on the wall when IOLERO needed a new community engagement lead.
"I've been in the county for 15 years, always trying to find my way, like what am I going to do with my degree," Camacho said. "So when I landed this job, I'm like, Oh my God, perfect."
Camacho said building stronger connections between the community and IOLERO is task number one.
"The way I envision it is just talking to people and letting them know who we are, what we do, and how to go about submitting a complaint," Camacho said. "A past event that we had, a lot of Spanish speaking families were coming up to the table and I would ask, Do you know what we do? No. They had no idea."
Another focus is explaining how the public can interact with IOLERO, not just how the office interacts with the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department.
"What we do, you know, you have a complaint against the sheriff's deputy or jail employee, you would contact us," Camacho said. "Then an investigation would follow."
The community engagement manager works closely with IOLERO’s Community Advisory Council, a volunteer body also focused on public outreach and oversight recommendations.
Though new to the role, Camacho feels ready for what’s to come.
"I think we're moving in the right direction," Camacho said. "I feel like Sonoma County is catching up to what everybody else is doing. So I'm really happy about that because I feel like we shouldn't have waited till the Andy Lopez incident to have started this office. So I'm happy that it's here. I'm happy of the work that we do, and I'm hoping that we'll get more busy and we'll get more employees here."