Tuesday, January 3, 2012
Christopher Williamson has been named deputy commander of the SC Highway Patrol.
Williamson, a 24 year veteran of the patrol, most recently served as commander of Troop 6, which covers Berkeley, Charleston, Dorchester, counties.
“This is quite a milestone for me,” Williamson said. “I am honored and I want the public to know that my work ethic is and continues to be to put the citizens of South Carolina and their safety first.”
SC Dept. of Public Safety Director Leroy Smith recently named Michael Oliver, who has served as second-in-command of SCHP since since 2009, to head the Patrol, which has 804 troopers and 188 civilian personnel. Colonel Oliver chose Williamson to serve as lieutenant colonel.
“My main function, of course, is to assist the Colonel in leading the patrol to accomplish our mission – and that’s to reduce fatalities and make our highways safer,” Williamson said. More specifically, he will oversee the patrol’s field operations throughout the state, he said.
In assessing his new leadership team, Smith noted that Col. Oliver, 52, and Lt. Col. Williamson, 49, have a positive relationship with the troopers in the field and are well-respected within SCDPS and beyond the agency, which were critical factors in their selection. Smith also emphasized the importance of cultivating strong partnerships with other federal, state and local law enforcement partners.
“I am proud of the depth of experience these men bring to the table,” Smith said. “They have invested their careers in the South Carolina Highway Patrol and understand the needs and challenges of our troopers. I am confident that our new leadership will fight along with me to ensure that the men and women of the Highway Patrol have the support, equipment and safety measures in place to protect them and best serve our state’s citizens and visitors.”
“It is in the best interest of our troopers and employees to have capable, strong leadership as we go into the holidays and into the new year,” Smith added. “The holidays are a critical time on our roadways, and that is exactly where I want our focus right now.”
Williamson, a Darlington native, joined the Highway Patrol in 1988. He was promoted to captain in Troop Seven in 2005 and transferred to Troop Six as captain in 2009. Williamson began his career in Berkeley County and has spent his career with the Patrol in the Orangeburg/Charleston region.
Williamson is married to Deloris Williamson and they live in Moncks Corner and attend Nazareth Reformed Episcopal Church. He has two children Krissy, 26, and Daysha, 21.