Sheriff Arpaio Touts Former Spokesman's Success as Agency's "First Hispanic" Deputy Chief

Paul Chagolla, the former spokesman for Sheriff Joe Arpaio who many in the media found tough to deal with, has made history.

It turns out he's the first Hispanic in the long history of the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office to have ever achieved the rank of Deputy Chief.

Isn't that something? Our county follows the Anchorage, Alaska police department by seven years.

You'd think at least one other news outlet or blogger in town would have reported Chagolla's recent ground-breaking promotion, especially while the sheriff's appearance in a new reality TV show has been getting more than its fair share of press. The news about Chagolla was announced by Arpaio in a November 21 news release (and which we also somehow overlooked until now. When New Times spoke with Arpaio's media relations director, Lisa Allen, for a follow-up post on Chagolla a couple of weeks ago, she didn't mention his achievement.

Of course, we can't help but chuckle at Arpaio's description of Chagolla in the news release:

"Paul Chagolla has been a fine media relations officer for the past six years," Arpaio says. "He was dedicated to engineering excellent working relationships with the local media and was always on guard protecting this office and this Sheriff from bias or inaccurate reporting. The local media could always count on Paul."

Arpaio says.

"Chief Chagolla brings a high degree of professionalism and expertise to this Office."

We hope these words of praise are true of Chagolla's performance as the sheriff's office's first Hispanic deputy chief. -- Ray Stern

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.