December 12, 2023

VBPD Hires Jessica Huffman as Police Wellness Coordinator

The Virginia Beach Police Department (VBPD) is pleased to announce the hiring of Jessica Huffman as its new Police Wellness Coordinator; a position focused on encouraging healthy living and individual approaches to foster stress reduction and personal resilience – crucial skills for the unique and demanding nature of law enforcement professionals.

In her role, Ms. Huffman coordinates and manages total wellbeing initiatives for sworn and professional members of the Department including employee wellness; occupational safety; and cognitive, emotional, and behavioral resilience. Ms. Huffman develops and administers wellness programs for employees; leads health awareness campaigns designed to educate employees about preventative care measures; conducts training to educate supervisors and senior leadership to identify when to provide appropriate intervention, resources, and proactive support to direct reports; and, as the Department’s Peer Support Team co-coordinator, she is available for one-on-one counseling, maintaining confidentiality of participants to create a safe and supportive climate for members requiring assistance.

“I am grateful and proud to join the Virginia Beach Police Department as its new Police Wellness Coordinator,” said Huffman. “Through my professional experiences, I have had many unique and dynamic opportunities to create and evaluate programs, learn with and from the community, and gain new perspectives and understandings of what mental wellness can look like for individuals, families, and communities. I’m excited to bring this experience to VBPD.”

“Providing emotional support for police officers is not just a matter of employee wellbeing; it's also crucial for the overall effectiveness and public trust in law enforcement agencies,” said Police Chief Paul Neudigate. “Acknowledging and addressing the emotional needs of officers leads to healthier individuals and stronger, more resilient law enforcement organizations. We are very fortunate to have someone with Jessica’s credentials on our team to foster and normalize this culture of prioritizing of emotional wellbeing.”

Ms. Huffman holds a Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Wake Forest University. She is currently in her final semesters of a PhD program in Counseling Education and Supervision at Old Dominion University. Ms. Huffman is currently engaging in her dissertation research which focuses on how mental health professionals can best collaborate with and support Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) officers and programs. Jessica will have her LPC in January 2024, and currently holds licenses and credentials as a Resident in Counseling in Virginia, Certified Trauma Professional, Certified First Responder Counselor Associate, and CIT 40-hour training.

Contact Information

Police - Public Affairs Office

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