Andy Latham Retires from Mt. Pleasant Police Department – Brandon Bliss Promoted to Assistant Police Chief

Andy Latham
Brandon Bliss

MT. PLEASANT, MI – Director of Public Safety/Police Chief Paul Lauria recently announced personnel changes within the Mt. Pleasant Police Department (MPPD). Effective November 4, 2022, Assistant Police Chief Andy Latham will retire after 26 years of service to the department. Lieutenant Brandon Bliss has been promoted to Assistant Police Chief and will assume his new duties on November 6, 2022.

Director Lauria stated, “There is much to celebrate with these recent personnel changes. It is wonderful to witness a dedicated and successful law enforcement official like Assistant Police Chief Latham achieve retirement. His commitment to our profession and department is truly appreciated and we thank him for his service. It is a bonus,” Lauria continued, “to have the ability to promote a highly qualified individual like Brandon Bliss up through the departmental ranks to fill the role of Assistant Police Chief. Since joining the MPPD in 2008, Brandon has exhibited a strong work ethic and dedication. He will do well in his new role.”  

During his tenure with the MPPD, Assistant Police Chief Andy Latham progressed through the ranks of Officer, Sergeant, Lieutenant, Captain and Assistant Police Chief.  

Special assignments included serving on the Isabella County Traffic Team, Bayanet, Youth Services Unit, and the Mt. Pleasant Fire Technical Rescue Team. He was also a Motor Operator, Arson Investigator and Commander of the Emergency Services Unit.  

Andy has long taken pride in assisting his community by organizing MPPD volunteer activities including: Toys for Tots, Shop with a Cop, Shop with a Hero, Christmas Outreach, helping the Strickler Center Food Pantry, as well as preparing and serving food for the Isabella County Restoration House.

As Andy shared, “I am very fortunate to have spent my career at the MPPD. I have been encouraged and motivated to refine and grow my skill set.” During his law enforcement years, Andy completed multiple Michigan State Police Supervisory Courses, as well as graduated from the Grand Rapids Police Executive Leadership Institute, and the FBI National Academy. This is in addition to his Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice Administration from Columbia Southern University.      

Reflecting on his MPPD experiences Andy observed, “I have had the pleasure of working with many noble men and women over the decades. Our community is fortunate to have a Division of Public Safety populated with men and women who are courageous, caring and are deserving of continued gratitude and support.  As I retire from the law enforcement profession,” He added, “I do so with great memories, lasting friendships and no regrets. It has been my pleasure to serve the Mt. Pleasant community alongside a talented and committed Public Safety team.”

Andy’s immediate retirement plans include assuming the role of Dean of Students/Athletic Director for Sacred Heart Academy in Mt. Pleasant.

In assuming his new position, Brandon Bliss possesses more than 17 years of law enforcement experience, with 14 of these years with the MPPD. During his time with the department he has served as a Lieutenant, Sergeant, Youth Services Unit Officer, team leader for the Emergency Services Team, lead Sergeant for the Field Training Program and held union leadership roles with the Police Officers Association of Michigan and the Command Officers Association of Michigan.

Brandon obtained a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Saginaw Valley State University and a master’s degree in Public Administration from Central Michigan University. Throughout his career he has also completed Michigan State University’s First Line Supervision Program as well as attending various other supervisory and leadership schools.

In regards to his new role Brandon shared, “There have been many exemplary leaders at the MPPD over the years. I look forward to carrying on that long tradition of excellence. I am even more excited to help and support a great group of officers who serve our community, in multiple ways, with integrity, pride and compassion.”