Payson Police Officer David Blalock has been promoted to the rank of sergeant.
Blalock, a 12-year veteran of the Payson Police Department competed against eight other officers in the testing process and received his sergeant stripes in a ceremony last week.
"He is a good, solid officer who is well-respected in the community," Payson Police Chief Gordon Gartner said. "He has trained many of our new officers. He has been a school resource officer and taught D.A.R.E. for several years. He is highly thought of by virtually everyone in the community."
Blalock began his law enforcement career with the U.S. Forest Service.
"I also fought fires and worked in the Payson Ranger District," Blalock said. "I have lived here for 26 years."
Blalock said he is both excited and nervous about his new position.
"I'm pretty excited about it but at the same time, it's a big change," Blalock said. "It's a lot more responsibility and having people to be responsible for is different than just being responsible for yourself."
Blalock is now one of six patrol sergeants who supervise squads of two patrol officers.
"I went through the testing process four years ago and didn't get it, so it's pretty exciting to go through it again with so much competition and get the job," Blalock said. "It's a great accomplishment."
Blalock credits his wife with his success.
"Fortunately, I have a great wife who supports me," he said. "If it wasn't for her, I wouldn't be where I am today."
Blalock moved to Payson in 1980 and married his high-school sweetheart, Sally, who is a Payson native. The two have five children.