The Moniteau County R-1 School district started its 2019-20 academic year with several new faculty members that span three campuses. One such new staff member will be seen at all three on a daily basis.
Deputy Leanna Brown began her new duties as the district's school resource officer in August. So far, the new title has been a comfortable one.
"I really enjoy it," Brown said. "I'm still in the learning process, but Scott has been a great help to me."
Scott, of course, is Deputy Harkins, the SRO that just began his second year keeping the three campuses safe and secure.
A career in law enforcement was not the first path Brown chose. But in 2013 when she began working as a dispatcher for Moniteau County, everything changed.
After answering one especially desperate call one day, Brown realized her desire to be in the field to assist others in times of need.
She eventually left Moniteau County to answer her own calls in Morgan County. Then, she took a step back from law enforcement. Time went by and Brown said the shift "just didn't feel right." Then she got a text message.
"It was maybe in July when I heard about the SRO job here," she said.
Brown knew it was time to help her community again.
"It just made sense. I still wanted to help in a way," she said. "This way, I can keep the teachers and kids safe. With that, I can hopefully help the future of the community. That may be oversaid, but I believe there's truth in that."
Even though some aspects of her job are new, one sure is not.
"I actually worked with Scott when I was a dispatcher and he was with the police department," she said. "So we basically helped each other then, and we're helping each other now. It's still a good partnership."