Jillian Ownbey greets citizens with compassion and patience in her role as an administrative assistant with the Whitfield County Sheriff’s Office, says her supervisor, Sgt. Jose M. Rivera.
“Mrs. Ownbey is normally the first face or voice our citizens interact with when they come in to our division with questions, complaints and in some cases trauma from being victims in cases being investigated by our office,” Rivera wrote as he nominated her as the county’s Employee of the Month for September.
Employed by the sheriff’s office since June 2013, Ownbey has grown to be an asset to the agency, Rivera says.
“She has always displayed a willingness to help others,” he says, “and communicates very well with visitors and callers to our office. Mrs. Ownbey’s infectious personality and positive attitude brings joy to our office.”
Rivera says Ownbey helps gather information for detectives within the division and routinely completes tasks such as obtaining tag information, criminal history of offenders and arranging for vital messages to be delivered to detectives while out in the field.
“Mrs. Ownbey has received several complimentary phone calls and emails advising how helpful, professional and pleasant she is while addressing the public’s needs,” Rivera said.
To help local residents get to know her a little better, Ownbey filled out the following fun questionnaire.
Name: Jillian Ownbey
Job title: Administrative assistant
Time with the county: Seven years
Where I went to high school: Northwest Whitfield High School
My role as a county employee: To assist the public with background checks, police reports, answering any questions pertaining to Detective’s Office/Records Department.
What keeps my job interesting: Every day is something new which breeds new opportunities to help people in need.
What gives me a sense of accomplishment on the job: Sometimes we deal with people who have been in a stressful situation, and they can be overwhelmed. By the end of the conversation, if the individual has calmed down and has relaxed, I feel that I did my job. We see people at the worst, but we want to leave them at their best.
The most important thing I’ve done on the job: Helping the detectives if they are working on a big case and being able to assist them, whether that be to run a background or enter something in a report that pertains to the case.
Where I grew up: Dalton
Spouse and children: Husband Tyler Ownbey, son Fynn, 4 years old.
After work, I enjoy: Hanging out with my family.
Community activities: Helping coach rec league T-ball and soccer.
Hobbies: Baking, working out, watching movies, playing with my son.
Favorite TV show: "Friends"
Favorite movie: "Remember the Titans"
Favorite actor/actress: Denzel Washington
Favorite sports team: Ohio State University
Favorite meal: Tacos
Favorite singer: Maroon 5
Favorite Whitfield County restaurant: Red Wolf
Favorite Whitfield County event: The Whitfield County Christmas party
You can pick four people to have dinner with (anyone from any time in history) – who are your four choices and why?:
1. My grandfather who passed away eight years ago. I admire him so much, and he was an incredible person.
2. My other grandfather who passed away 11 years ago. He was also an amazing person, and I miss his stories.
3. My Aunt Sherry who passed away from cancer. I was young when she passed, so I did not get to spend a lot of time with her but know she was a wonderful person.
4. Job from the Bible. He suffered horrible tragedy; however, he never stopped believing in God. He never let what happened to him define him, and he completely trusted God. I would love to talk and learn from him and get to know the person he was.
I’m most proud of: My son. He is the best thing that has happened to me and has taught me the true definition of unconditional love.
Cats or dogs?: Cats
Cake or pie?: Cake
Cornbread or roll?: Cornbread
Favorite car?: Range Rover
Host or be hosted?: Hosted
Early riser or sleep-in?: Early riser
Favorite vacation ever: When I was little, my family and extended family would go to Hilton Head. I enjoyed being with everyone and spending that extra quality time together.
Best teacher I ever had and why: Mr. Kenny Brazell. He was tough and challenging and pushed you to do better. He taught me to strive for the best and not to be afraid of a challenge.
Pet peeve: People cracking their knuckles
If I’ve learned one thing in life, it’s: That life is short and not to waste time on things that do not matter.
Who has had the most impact on my life: My mom is the strongest person I know, and I admire her very much.
What’s left on my bucket list: I do not have a bucket list. I just try to live in the moment.
If I could have been in any profession of my choosing, I would have been an: Actress.
If I could have two wishes, they would be: That we would all learn to love one another and that my son would know peace, love and joy.
You’d be surprised to learn that I: Once visited a movie set. My dad took me to Vancouver, and I got to meet Kathy Ireland and go on set for her Christmas Hallmark movie.
The best advice I ever got: As I was watching Pastor Steven Furtick online for church, he said “Stop wasting today’s strength fighting tomorrow’s battles.” I find that statement so true and something we all can benefit from.