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Peter Stein

Past Tompkins County Legislator

"I'm a retired Cornell University professor, and past long-time Tompkins County Legislator.  I also chaired the Public Safety Committee for quite some time, where I had the opportunity to work closely with both Derek Osborne and Ken Lansing.  I am supporting Derek Osborne and would strongly urge all of Tompkins County to do so too".

Gwen Wilkinson

Past Tompkins County District Attorney

"I’m Gwen Wilkinson, the former District Attorney and a career prosecutor in Tompkins County. Why is that relevant? Because I worked closely with both candidates for this office. Tonight, I am proud to endorse Derek Osborne for Tompkins County Sheriff.


Derek is one of the most – if not THE most – thoroughly trained law enforcement officers in Tompkins County. Here are just a few of the agencies from which he has received certifications:


   FBI National Academy

   NYS Office of Emergency Mgmt

   NYS Division of Criminal Justice

   US Dept of Homeland Security

   NYSP Training Academy

   National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime


I know from direct experience that Derek excels across a spectrum of law enforcement performance measures both as a cop and an administrator.


Derek is smart, always well prepared, and organized. His case files were templates for excellence in building strong prosecution cases.


Over and over I saw Derek’s commitment to excellence and dedication to public service in every case he worked. He routinely went beyond what was needed and strove to achieve what was best.


There are 3 Big Issues facing the Tompkins County’s Sheriff


Issue 1. Money - The next Sheriff needs the skills to meet the fiscal responsibilities of the Sheriff’s office, and in this era of perpetual fiscal austerity one of the main jobs is to keep costs down. Derek has a proven track record:


As the former Undersheriff Derek significantly decreased overtime expense.

When Derek was the Undersheriff overtime costs remained under $300k for each of the 4 years. When he left, the same costs skyrocketed. Overtime ran between $500k and $+700k for each of the next 4 years. Same Sheriff – only difference was Derek Osborne wasn’t there.

Issue 2. Opioid / overdose epidemic – Derek has experience in building cases against narco-traffickers. He also strongly supports the concept of a public health approach to healing people who are addicted. He knows this approach will save lives… and money – by cutting jail costs, and potentially reducing board out costs.


Issue 3. Jail - Derek believes in reintegrating inmates into society to increase  the chance for people to become productive citizens and reduce the jail population.  He knows how to find mental health and substance abuse treatment resources, as well as employment training, family counseling, and other social service referrals. He knows this will save taxpayer dollars.

When Derek became the Undersheriff he showed his leadership & administrative skills equaled his police skills:


He set a standard for excellence by developing and implementing all policy & procedures in accordance with Accreditation Standards.


Derek attended to morale by instituting an employee awards program and other motivational incentives.

Derek chased money: he routinely invented and pursued organizational changes leading to significant cost-savings.


Derek wrote, secured and managed grants.


For all of these reasons I am proud to nominate former Undersheriff Derek Osborne for Tompkins Couunty Sheriff.

I respectfully submit to you that Derek Osborne has the experience and vision to be our next Tompkins County Sheriff.  Thank you."

Cathy Valentino

Past Ithaca Town Supervisor

“I’m Cathy Valentino, past long-time Ithaca Town Supervisor.  I have been closely following this year’s election for Tompkins County Sheriff and have made the decision to endorse Derek Osborne.  Having moved up through the ranks of the Sheriff’s Office, Derek has both the experience and vision to lead the department well into the future.  It speaks volumes that Derek was the only member of the Sheriff’s Office to ever be nominated and selected to attend the prestigious FBI National Academy in Quantico, V.A.  This world-renown program is designed specifically for those law enforcement administrators exemplifying the highest degree of professionalism, integrity, and future promise.  In today’s climate, Derek is the candidate that I know can restore fiscal responsibility, improve community trust, and establish a more diverse Sheriff’s Office.”

Martha Robertson

Chair of the Tompkins County Legislature

"In my 16+ years on the Tompkins County Legislature, I have worked closely with two different Sheriffs so far. This election year, I’m voting for Derek Osborne because I think he’ll make a great Sheriff for our county.


Derek is running only on the Democratic line, so I urge people to get out to vote for him in the Democratic primary on Thursday, September 13; the polls are open from noon to 9:00 p.m.


Derek Osborne understands the County’s efforts to reduce recidivism by helping people re-enter the community successfully after incarceration. After retiring from the Tompkins County Sheriff’s Office in 2015, following his 20-year career in law enforcement, Derek went to work for a non-profit in a community reintegration program for federal prison inmates. There he built positive relationships with community agencies to connect the prisoners with mental health and substance abuse counseling, employment training, family counseling, and other social service referrals. Having that direct experience, helping people to succeed after incarceration, will be a first for a Tompkins County Sheriff.


Derek knows his way around the county budget. While serving as our Undersheriff, he was smart about managing road patrol staffing, and as a result was able to significantly reduce the overtime budget. He will be a hands-on manager who understands how to balance the department’s needs with his responsibility to the taxpayers.


The Democratic primary election is Thursday, September 13. Yes, that’s a Thursday. Please mark your calendars, and vote for Derek Osborne for Sheriff."

Tompkins County Progressives

Derek and his opponent were provided the opportunity to speak to the TCP about their candidacies.  When the votes were tallied, the group chose to endorse Derek Osborne over his opponent 20-2 !!! 

Deborah Dawson

Tompkins County Legislator for District 10

"I'm proud to endorse and support Derek Osborne for Tompkins County Sheriff.  He is an honorable, honest, well-trained and highly competent law enforcement professional who fully accepts responsibility for his actions and decisions.  Derek WILL make us all proud of our Sheriff's Department."

Peter Meskill

Tompkins County Sheriff 1999-2010

"This year we have the opportunity to elect Derek Osborne, an outstanding candidate, who will be an outstanding Sheriff.  He is totally qualified including FBI Academy training!  He has been promoted through the ranks of the Sheriff's Office , including a promotion to Undersheriff by the current Sheriff and he knows this community well!  Now more than ever we need a well trained person with Integrity and Leadership to effectively manage and administrate the Office of Sheriff without overspending the budget like the current Sheriff.  We desperately need a Sheriff who is up to date, who is accountable and who understands the importance of properly and safely running the Tompkins County Jail without demanding a new jail! We do not need a person like the current Sheriff who claims to have files on residents ( and elected officials or whom systematically destroyed a home (Ithaca Journal Jan. 2015) over a DWI arrest warrant.  Most importantly we need a Sheriff that shows up and participates in our community, government and the daily operations of the Sheriff's Office."



Tompkins County Sheriff - Ithaca, NY
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