John Thompson is the deputy executive director and chief of staff for the National Sheriff’s Association (NSA). Throughout his 44 year career in public safety, he has served as chief of police for Mount Rainier, Maryland, in addition to being a volunteer firefighter, emergency communications operator, and an animal control officer. While in the Army he served as a canine handler and military intelligence officer.
In 2014, John led a movement that established the National Coalition on Violence Against Animals, an independent collective of local, state, and national organizations that focus on animal cruelty and its relationship to other forms of violence. Last September, with support from the National Sheriffs’ Association and other organizations, his successful petition to the FBI to include animal abuse crimes in the Uniform Crime Report means that crimes against animals are now recognized as their own unique category.
John also established the National Law Enforcement Center on Animal Abuse in 2014, a clearinghouse at the National Sheriffs’ Association for law enforcement on all animal abuse issues they may face. Currently, he is working with others to create a top-notch training program for law enforcement, in order to address officer-dog encounters and reduce unnecessary conflicts.
John serves on a variety of state and national boards for law enforcement. He serves on the National Homeland Security Consortium and chairs the Department of Homeland Security Emergency Services Sector Coordinating Council. He is also a member of the FBI, the Criminal Justice Information Advisory Policy Board, the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, and the Law Enforcement Congressional Badge of Bravery Review Board.