Meet a Mountain Lion: Clay Garner, Deputy Chief of UCCS Police

Clay Garner is Deputy Chief of UCCS Police.

“Meet a Mountain Lion” is a series of stories introducing members of the UCCS community to campus. Meet Clay Garner, Deputy Chief of UCCS Police.

1. Tell us about your background, and what brought you to UCCS.

I began my law enforcement career in 1997. Since that time, I’ve worked in the Department of Corrections as a sheriff’s deputy, a municipal police officer and finally a campus police officer.

I came to UCCS with the intent of staying in law enforcement while finishing my education. I still haven’t finished my education…but I did find in UCCS a place and people I could be proud to serve.

2. What do you do at UCCS?

I am the law enforcement administrator for the Department of Public Safety here at UCCS. Some of my main tasks are in oversight. I oversee our patrol training program, our investigation units, all of our hiring, event operations and all of our policies regarding building hours, classroom opening and key management. I work closely with the  C.A.R.E Team and Faculty/Staff Response Team.

One big push I have been involved in is related to security cameras on campus: I provide oversight for the current security camera system maintenance, hardware and software, and new camera requests, and I am integral in the current effort to get new cameras for other campus locations. And if the Chief of Police is ever absent, I always have to be prepared to assume the role of acting chief.

Some of my other work is to be a liaison to the community. I am the liaison to the 4th Judicial District, where I contribute to legislative changes affecting police practice and court processes. I am also the liaison to the Colorado Springs Police Department, Falcon Division Commander. 

3. What do you love about UCCS?

The people. The kindness and commitment of the people at UCCS is unmatched. I couldn’t imagine working anywhere else.

4. What are you working on right now?      

Being flexible and adjusting to change. Being a law enforcement administrator means constantly revising policy and practice to conform with new legislation and highest industry standards.

5. What energizes you at your job?     

Helping people. When you get to help someone through a rough patch and see them succeed it makes it all worth it.

6. What’s an accomplishment you’re proud of?

21 years of service to UCCS and counting!

7. What’s a goal you have for the future?

Finally finishing my education. The degree I’m pursuing is in criminal justice.

8. What do you do with your free time?

I nerd out on video games. I also enjoy reading and tormenting my neighbors by feeding all of the squirrels and raccoons on my block.

9. What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received?

The safety of the UCCS campus is often cited by parents as one of the reasons they chose UCCS for their student’s college education.

Do you know a Mountain Lion that UCCS should meet? We want to hear all about them! Invite them to share their story, and we’ll tell it to the UCCS community.