Published 5:21 am Friday, January 30, 2004
CASSOPOLIS -- Cass County Sheriff Joseph M. Underwood Jr. announces his plans to seek re-election as a Republican to a fourth four-year term.
In making his announcement Monday, Underwood expressed his pride in the greatly expanded communication collaboration and cooperation that have marked his tenure as sheriff.
Underwood believes that exemplary law enforcement results from a coordinated approach throughout the county, which can be seen in the many partnerships that have formed to protect Cass County citizens:
Underwood underscored his continuing commitment to serve the people of Cass County -- a task he undertook nearly 30 years ago when his law enforcement career began with the Dowagiac Police Department.
Underwood has a bachelor's degree from Western Michigan University and he completed the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Va.
His military service was from 1966 to 1968 with the U.S. Army, where he achieved the rank of sergeant and an honorable discharge. The sheriff earned the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal and a Purple Heart.
His law enforcement memberships include the Michigan Sheriffs' Association, Cass County Community Corrections Advisory Board, Fight Crime: Invest in Kids, president of the Law Advisory Council and the Cass County Major Crimes Task Force.
Underwood belongs to the American Legion, Cass County Red Cross, the Human Services Coordinating Council, Civitan, Dowagiac Rotary, Lakeland Hospital Rural Health Board, Dowagiac Area Federal Credit Union vice president, House of Prayer Community Church, Veterans of Foreign Wars Cassopolis Chapter Post 10704 and the Blossomtime board.
His volunteer activities include Cass County Council on Aging Meals on Wheels driver and American Cancer Society Relay for Life team co-captain.
Michigan Gov. Jennifer M. Granholm in 2003 appointed the sheriff to the Michigan Committee on Juvenile Justice board.
He was awarded the Paul Harris Fellow, Rotary's highest award for community service, in 2001.
Michigan Credit Union Foundations recognized Underwood as Volunteer of the Year in 2000.
He and his wife, Cindy, live in Cassopolis. They are the parents of four children.