A Father/Son Reunion at the CJ CenterCody Leach is literally following in his father’s footstep in the College of Criminal Justice
In 1982, Ron Leach took a job as a student worker in the center, mingling with faculty and honored guests in the hallowed halls of one of the first criminal justice programs in the nation. After graduation, Ron Leach worked briefly as a police officer in Panorama Village and with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice in the Eastham Unit before launching his career in probation. He currently serves as Director of the Department of Community Supervision and Corrections (adult probation) for Montgomery County.
Cody Leach took a slightly different path to get to college, beginning service in the Texas National Guard at 17 years of age in his junior year of high school. Now in his first year at Sam Houston State University, Cody Leach landed a job in the Dean’s Suite at the College and began rubbing elbows – and shaking hands – with the constant flow of visitors to the College and its professional institutes. He has his sights set on a federal career in the CIA or FBI, working in a foreign country or as a translator.
Ron Leach learned under the tutelage of many great professors of the past, including Drs. Wayland Pilcher, Doug Moore, James Barrum, Jerry Dowling, and Sam Souryal, who he got to know professionally and personally because of his job. He joined Lambda Alpha Epsilon and served as the organization’s president. He learned to speak in front of a large crowd when he presentated at the group’s national convention in El Segundo, California, a trip partially funded by then Dean Victor Strecher. He met noted scholars who were featured in the pages of his textbook.
“I spent so much time here, that it became my second home,” said Ron Leach. “I established a core of friends here, and we became a family.”
Jim Mabry, an adjunct faculty member, introduced Cody Leach to the center, taking him on a personal tour. Finance Manager Matt Olmstead took the young Leach under his wing, treating him more like a colleague than a student.
“It’s a good job,” said Cody Leach. “I like to be in an office where I can meet the people I need to meet to get me where I need to go.”
Cody is focused and determined to reach his goal, beginning with a challenging class in Arabic his first semester. He also plans to join Lambda Alpha Epsilon, a national fraternity for criminal justice professionals. He credits his training in the Texas National Guard and his father for guiding him along the way.
Cody Leach is an infantry mortarman at Fort Bullis, where he serves one weekend a month. He credits the National Guard with teaching him discipline and time management. “It put me ahead of a lot of people I know.” His father taught him the importance of focusing on his studies. “He gave me the foundation of what to do and not to do. Our experiences will be different, but I will be living his past in my future.”