, August 19, 2008
It is not every day that you “arrest” your son, but there is always an exception. Larry Hofmann, ‘84, proves to be the exception in this case, as he would “arrest” his 14-year-old son, Lawrence, Jr., multiple times a day, but for a good cause. The “arrests” were Larry’s practice of the arrest technique, for his training to be a Larimer County Reserve Deputy Sheriff. “I love it,” he says of his volunteer job. “It keeps me active, gives me a sense of accomplishment and duty, and a sense of satisfaction. It is about helping protect and serve your community.”
On July 7, 2007, after completing an intense application process that included paper work, background check, psychological exam, and 240 hours of training, Larry was sworn in as a limited commission peace officer in Colorado.
He learned techniques such as arrest control, firearms safety, and driving through an abbreviated version of the program for full-time paid deputies. As a volunteer and limited commissioned officer, Larry has the same responsibilities, duties and authority of a full-time paid deputy. The difference shows up at the end of the day in his level of authority (and well, also in the lack of a paycheck). When he is off duty, he doesn’t retain the arrest authority.
Since June 2007, Larry has put in 60-70 hours a month with the sheriff and has worked with traffic, security, and even doing perimeter security during a raid by a SWAT team on a methamphetamine lab.
During his usual (paid) working hours, Larry is an Information Technology Regulatory Compliance Manager at Agilent, where he ensures the company complies with federal and state laws such as HIPPA (Health Insurance Portability Accountability Act of 1996). Starting in his days at Glendale Academy when he would steal paper towels from the boys bathroom to use as printer paper, Larry knew he wanted to work with computers. Following that passion (and his family’s lead) he attended Pacific Union College. “Those were some of the best years of my life,” says Larry, clearly enjoying reminiscing about PUC memories such as third floor Grainger hall worships with a guitar and friends, learning to make sushi, and hiking all over Mt. St. Helena and Lake Berryessa. After graduating from PUC in 1984 with a bachelor’s in computer science, he went on to get a master’s from Arizona State University.
While conducting the background check for his application to the Reserve Deputy Sheriff program, the investigating officer contacted Larry’s boss at Agilent and asked if Larry could be trusted. His boss’s response? That Larry was already essentially law enforcement for the company because his job is basically to keep the CEO and CFO out of jail by ensuring fulfillment of the law. But, of course, they love him for it.
Though, before becoming a deputy sheriff, Larry had never been involved in public service, he is no stranger to volunteer service. He served for nine years on his church’s board and his father, Walter D. Hofmann, M.D., ‘49, exemplified volunteer service as a Mounted Reserve Deputy with the Los Angels Reserve Deputy Sheriff Department and currently as a member of the San Diego Police Department Crisis Team.
For Larry, volunteering is more then an activity; it is an opportunity to help his community and to make a positive impact. “Adventists tend to remove themselves from public service such as law enforcement,” he comments. “The law enforcement crowd is a rough bunch–they see a lot of junk. But, if I can provide a positive outlook on life and be there to listen, then maybe in some way I can be an influence on them.”