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Image by Tim Falls

Candice Mitchell

Owner & Lead Instructor




Candice's Journey

Candice Mitchell retired from public service in December 2019. With great love and appreciation for her community and the heart of a public servant, Candice's strong desire to lead and uphold the rights of the citizens of San Juan County carried her through a 21-year long career in New Mexico's criminal justice field.

Candice holds a bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice Studies from New Mexico Highlands University and she's an alumni member of Leadership San Juan, a leadership program designed to address the unique needs of the community. Throughout her years in public service, her career path crossed almost every aspect of the justice system in New Mexico. Her experience in the judicial system includes working as a clerk for Municipal, Magistrate and the District Courts. And although the majority of her experience is in law enforcement and she has a strong desire to help deliver justice to those wronged, she also has a well-rounded understanding of alternatives to incarceration based on her experience in corrections as an Adult Probation & Parole Officer. 

Candice started her career in Public Service to San Juan County in 1995 when she took a college work-study job as an assistant at the Farmington Municipal Court. She also worked for the District and Magistrate courts. Her law enforcement experience began as a Crime Analyst for the Bloomfield Police Department and in 2003 she became a peace officer when she took a position as a State Probation & Parole Officer. She was later hired as a Criminal Investigator by the 11th Judicial District Attorney’s Office and simultaneously served as a Deputy Medical Investigator before joining the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office. At the Sheriff’s Office, Candice served as a patrol deputy. She was assigned to the Four Corners Gang Task Force and to the Special Enforcement Team before she was promoted to Detective and eventually to Sergeant. At the rank of Sergeant, she served in the Patrol, Detectives and Training divisions before taking her last post as the Director of the San Juan County Criminal Justice Training Authority. Throughout her career as a law enforcement officer, she received two letters of recognition, was awarded two exceptional service awards and two life-saving medals.

Candice's passion as an instructor began in 2003 when she became a personal fitness trainer as a side job for a small local gym. In 2008, she became a certified police instructor for the local police academy and in 2013 became the Director and Lead Instructor for the community awareness program "Girls with Grit" at the San Juan County Sheriff's Office. 

In April of 2021, Candice lost her best friend in law enforcement to suicide. This tragedy inspired her to help promote suicide awareness and prevention in law enforcement. In September 2021, Candice resigned from her full-time position as a Human Resources Supervisor at a local school district to work with Paul and provide law enforcement specific training curriculum through VTac. 

Candice has a dynamic and engaging style of instruction that brings her skills and experience to every class in a way that inspires and motivates participants to broaden their horizons and take the next step in their careers. 

Testimonials & Awards


“She is extremely well rounded and has demonstrated a high level of character, work ethic and integrity while performing her duties on a daily basis….I am most impressed with her ability to get things done…the county is lucky to have her as a public servant.” - Captain Brice Current, San Juan County Sheriff’s Office

Image by Jimmy Conover

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