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Servant leadership

Kevin Haynes: Hometown Hero

Ennis native and Ennis ISD Police Chief Kevin Haynes had a tough decision about what he wanted to be growing up, so he made what for him was the toughest decision of all, by not selecting just one profession.
“My youth was pretty interesting,” said Haynes. “Growing up, I couldn’t decide what I wanted to be. My grandfather, my uncle and my cousin were all police officers in town. I had a good friend who was a volunteer firefighter. My aunt and uncle owned a funeral home. I was fascinated with all of these professions. I dibbled and dabbled with all three.”
Eventually Haynes chose to learn all three professions and he is certified in each.
After graduating from Ennis High School, Haynes began his college career at Pierce Mortuary College in 1988, but had a change of heart when he “got burned out” and made the switch to Cedar Valley College Law Enforcement Academy, where he graduated in 1992. Haynes eventually went back to Pierce Mortuary College and graduated in 1999.
Not quite satisfied with his knowledge about all the professions he wanted to learn about, while attending classes at Pierce and Cedar Valley, Haynes also attended classes through the Ennis fire department and acquired his certification for volunteer firefighting.
“I later went on to get my arson certification and investigator certification,” said Haynes.
Although certified and ready to earn a living in numerous occupations, Haynes has chosen to spend his workweek protecting and serving the school children of Ennis ISD as the Chief of Police for the Ennis Independent School District. He took the position in August of 2000.
“I really like the kids,” Haynes said. “It’s a new challenge every day. You find that there is a lot going on with these kids. I find that if I can help just one every now and then, I feel I am pretty successful.”
Haynes said he feels he has a good relationship with the students and considers himself to be a good person they can talk to easily.
“It is more challenging each year with the kids being exposed to a lot more stuff,” said Haynes. “It’s wide open with television and worldwide communication on the Internet.”
EISD Communication Director Glenn Hyde said Haynes has “always been an outstanding young man and a wonderful police chief for the Ennis ISD.”
“I thought Kevin was perfect for the job because it required someone who would not misuse their office,” said Hyde. “It required someone who was patient and stern and someone that could do the job and not antagonize the students. We got what we were looking for.”
Before taking control of the EISD police force, Haynes was a sergeant in the Sheriff Department’s jail division and the Police Chief in Italy. He began as a patrol officer in Italy in 1994 but only three years later – following a big turnover – Italy turned to Haynes to move its department forward.
“I was kind of the only survivor of the turmoil,” said Haynes. “It was a very interesting situation.”
Haynes was the first black Chief in Italy’s history.
Haynes lives in Ovilla with his wife Carolyn and 14-year-old daughter, who is just one of the many students he watches over at the high school.
“That was a big issue for me this year,” said Haynes about his daughter going to school where he worked. “I wondered what our relationship would be like, but it has really worked out well I think.”
After growing up in Ennis and still working here, Haynes feels he has a firm grasp of what Ennis is truly like. He said Ennis is unique in its own little way because like most small towns, it can be difficult to live with much privacy.
“Ennis is still a town where everyone knows everyone,” said Haynes.
Although he lives in Ovilla, Haynes still does what he can for the community and he attends church in Ennis, where he is a deacon and the minister of pastoral affairs.
“I think the personal encouragement from people here in town and in church has been a big boost for me,” said Haynes. “The encouragement and support I have gotten (is wonderful) from the people in this town. It’s been a good experience for me coming back here to work.”
Many in law enforcement in this community are glad Haynes is here as well.
“In my dealings with Kevin it has been a great experience,” said Ennis Det. Lt. Ron Roark. “I have known Kevin most of his life and I only have good things to say. I have nothing but high respect for him and I call him a friend. Not only do I like him, I trust him.”
Roark went on to praise Haynes as not just a good person, but also an exceptional officer who is very good at the work he does.
“Kevin being chief of police in Italy gave him leadership values and experience,” Roark said. “It appears he gets along with the school supervisors and employees very well. I’ve never heard anything negative from his employees or the school district about Kevin.”
As Haynes thinks about his future here, he said things are bright and hopeful.
“I’d like to increase the number of officers we have,” Haynes said, “to provide more service to the student body and staff.”
His colleagues say they aren’t surprised to learn Ennis ISD’s top cop’s primary concern is how to do a better job taking care of the students entrusted to his care.
They said that’s “just who he is.”

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Posted by on Feb 27 2007. Filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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