Bureau of Professional Standards & Public Relations

J.S. (Steve) Shi, Major

Major J. S. (Steve) Shi is the head of the Bureau of Professional Standards and Public Affairs, which is responsible for organizing and coordinating all training, conducting internal affairs investigations and background investigations for new personnel, ensuring agency certification is current, ensuring  current certification of all sworn law enforcement personnel, developing and updating all agency policies and procedures, legal updates, coordination of the Intern Program and managing public affairs for the Sheriff’s Office. In addition, the Bureau manages the Reserve Division and the Citizens’ Posse and coordinates the Citizens’ Academy.

Major Shi is a retired U.S. Marine Corps Colonel with 33 years’ regular and reserve service as an infantry and reconnaissance officer, including combat in Vietnam and later as a Judge Advocate specializing in rules of engagement for special operations forces.

He is also a retired attorney, having practiced as a specialist in environmental law representing small businesses in permitting and compliance matters in North Carolina and Georgia. He also was an adjunct professor for 20 years at his alma mater, the University of Georgia School of Law teaching Legal Writing, Law of War and Military Justice courses.

Since 2013, he has also owned and operated Semper Fi Gun Training LLC where he has taught over 2000 civilian, law enforcement and military students basic and advanced defensive and tactical use of firearms, including pistol, carbine, shotgun, select fire and sub machine gun and precision rifle courses

He is an NRA/Winchester Distinguished Expert with the Semi-Automatic Pistol.

He is a former Rotarian in the Winston Salem NC, the  Habersham County Georgia and Athens Georgia clubs. He is an honors graduate of Georgia State University, University of Georgia School of Law and received a postgraduate law degree from the University of Virginia Law School.

He is also a graduate of a number of military schools and courses including The Basic School, The Amphibious Warfare School, The Marine Corps Command and Staff College, The Naval War College, the Marine Corps  Reconnaissance Course, the U.S. Army Airborne, Pathfinder and Jungle Expert Courses, the U.S. Navy Naval Gunfire Air Spotter Course and the SERE, SERE (Arctic), SCUBA, HALO and SEAL Demolition Schools. He was also the U.S. Marine Corps Representative and the Law of War instructor at the U.S. Air Force Justice School at Maxwell Air Force Base.

He has been married to his wife Betsy for 50 years and has 2 children and 3 grandchildren. He is a member of The Torch Church in Demorest and has been very active in animal rescue and rehoming for many years. Before injuries took their toll he was an avid ultramarathon runner.