By: Carly Levy
Hurricane Irma is expected to make its way to South Florida this weekend. As a captain with the Broward Sheriff’s Office in Parkland, Jan Jordan along with her deputies, are preparing for the storm.
Having been in law enforcement for 27 years, Captain Jordan has experience with hurricanes. She’s making sure the Parkland district has already been fully prepared by refueling vehicles, getting the building generator serviced, making sure they have an adequate water supply at the station and getting the building prepared if and when the hurricane hits.
Deputies will also be prepared to spend both night and day at the building which shares space with Coral Springs/Parkland Fire Rescue.
“We’ll be out handling calls and making sure the streets are safe. If there are any downed trees or if the traffic lights are out, we’ll be directing traffic,” said Jordan.
Starting with the city this past January, Jordan says that the best part about her job is being able to work with the Parkland residents.
“I am so appreciative and honored to be working in Parkland. It’s a beautiful city and the community and the people are so incredibly nice here,” said Jordan. “I come to work everyday and I think ‘I’m so lucky to be able to work here.’”
Born in South Portland, Maine, Jordan grew up in Hollywood, Florida and graduated from McArthur High. She was inspired to become a law enforcement officer while in college in North Carolina where she took an extra credit assignment for her sociology class about domestic violence giving her the opportunity to ride along with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department. She left North Carolina in her junior year to move to Florida in pursuit of those dreams graduating from the Broward County Police Academy at Broward County College in 1989 where she said she learned about the law and tactics. In 2004, Jordan graduated from Miami’s Union Institute & University with a bachelor of arts in public administration.
Before working in Parkland, Jordan was a captain for the Fort Lauderdale Police Department where she worked for 21 years until her retirement. Her professional experience ranges from road patrol, SWAT, hostage/crisis negotiation, traffic homicide, mounted and motor unit. She enjoyed being a motor officer and interacting with the community as well as being a mounted officer working with horses and patrolling the beaches on horseback in Fort Lauderdale.
Being in law enforcement presents life or death situations, however, Jordan is prepared when those moments come. She believes that falling back on her training is important when deciding what course of action to take.
“If anyone in police work told you that they’ve never been scared or have never been in a situation where they’ve been scared, they’re lying to you,” said Jordan.
Her advice for those who would like to have a career in law enforcement is to continue with their education and volunteer in their community. She recommends taking police department tours, along with getting involved with the Police Explorers Program at BSO.
“That’s a great way to help people, and ultimately when the kids are going to get into law enforcement, it’s about helping the community and making the community safe.”
When Jordan is off-duty she likes to go out on her boat, snorkel, read and spend time with her dogs.
She knew that she was in the right place when on her very first day working in Parkland she saw a good sign from her office window: two horses lingering outside that had just escaped from their paddock nearby. The horses recognized one of her deputies who was familiar with them, and allowed them both to secure and return them home to their owners.
“Seeing those horses outside of my office window was a welcome sight,” said Jordan.