Interview and photo by Abernathy Cochran intern and Gainesville High senior Donangelo Marshall
Meet Officer JaLisa Dickerson! JaLisa has been an officer with the Gainesville Police Department for the last two years. She is from Savannah, has one son and loves to play soccer in her spare time.
We want to thank JaLisa for spending time with us recently and telling us more about her life and love of Hall County.
Question: Tell us a little bit about yourself.
A: “I am from Savannah, born and raised there. I have a Bachelor of Science in Social Science degree, a Criminal Justice Masters of Social Science degree in Homeland Security Emergency Management. Previously, I had worked with the Atlanta Police Department for about six years before I came to the Gainesville Police Department. I have one son who is very active and in my spare time I like to play soccer, exercise, shop, read and spend time with my family.”
Q: What inspired you or led you to your current career?
A: “I don’t have an awesome story of how I always wanted to be a police officer growing up as a kid because I actually wanted to be a pediatrician. However, in my family law enforcement is pretty big with women; my mom was a police officer, a few of my cousins mostly in the Florida area are police officers, so I grew up around it and I understand it and I just developed into this career path.”
Q: What is your favorite restaurant in Hall County and what do you love there?
A: “Atlanta Highway Seafood Market.”
Q: Who is the most interesting person you’ve met here in Hall County?
A: “Actually, I have the pleasure of meeting Pastor Roderick Hughey, we had a very interesting conversation about the direction of law enforcement and how tough it is for me in law enforcement in the year 2020…he does a lot with the community as far as ministries and he’s a chaplain for the police department.”
Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would it be and why?
A: “I would travel to Brazil because of the water, it’s beautiful and exotic.”
Q: What is your favorite movie or what is the first movie you remember seeing in the theater?
A: “My favorite movie is Bad Boys…all of them! And I have no idea about the first movie I remember seeing in the theater but I’m sure it’s kind of kids movie like a Barbie film or Rugrats.”
Q: What advice would you give to a crowd of people?
A: “Love more often, be kind more often to bring more peace.”
Q: What is something on your bucket list?
A: “Sky diving…it’s going to happen within the next year.”
Q: What is your favorite music or three bands you would like to see (dead or alive)?
A: “The Fugees- with Lauryn Hill, Pras Michel and Wyclef Jean. They’re my only favorite band. I love R & B, Rap and Gospel.”
Q: If you could choose anyone that is alive today and not a relative; with whom would you love to have lunch? Why? And where locally would y’all meet for this lunch?
A: “I’ve always liked to have lunch with Beyonce because she’s an amazing person. I don’t know if she eats seafood but we would go to Atlanta Highway Seafood Market.”
Q: What is your favorite thing or something unique about Hall County?
A: “I’ll have to say the trails, the lake and there’s so many places to walk and exercise.”
Q: Where do you see yourself in 5 to 10 years?
A: “I honestly see myself working for FEMA, which is the Federal Emergency Management, as part of the preparation team so we can prepare for natural disasters.”
Q: Even for (friends or family), what is something that most people don’t know about you?
A: “My friends and family know a lot about me but probably they don’t know that I get nervous during public speaking.”
Q: What 3 words or phrases that comes to mind when you hear the word “HOME”?
A: “Peace, Love and Happiness.”
Q: If you have a full-time staff member that is fully paid for, who would you choose? Chef, housekeeper, driver, coach, personal fitness trainer or nanny?
A: “A Personal Fitness Trainer because it is so hard staying focused and motivated when it comes to exercise.”