HOUSTON (FOX 26) - She's no stranger to Houston or to law enforcement, but Mary Young is new to her role as Texas Southern University police chief.
"We hear so many negative things about TSU," says Young. "I want to show them the positive things about TSU. So when the opportunity presented itself, I said, 'Why not?'"
After more than twenty years as a Houston police officer and years of teaching criminal justice courses at TSU, Young says she is more than prepared to supervise safety on the campus that boasts more than 8,500 students.
"We're going to change the whole meaning of TSU," adds Young. "It's going to be tired of seeing us as the police. We are going to be out here, be extremely visible. We want to change the whole mindset of what campus police and campus security looks like."
Young's experience as the mother of a college student may be the most valuable on campus.
"They can kind of look and say, 'You better straighten up, there's mom.' Some are away from home, so I need to let them know, I'm your momma when you're away from home," says Young. One of her first priorities is to provide active shooter training to TSU administrators and the 70 or so officers she will be managing.
Young replaces Remon Green who resigned as chief in early March following allegations of sexual harassment.
Speaking in general, Young says each officer's reputation is critically important.
"And just understand that what you do in the dark will come to the light. and without honesty and integrity, then why wear the badge, because the badge means that," says Young, the first female police chief at TSU, a fact that makes her proud.