Meet Nicholas Sampson, Pottawatomie County's new assistant emergency management director

Elisabeth Slay
The Shawnee News-Star

After two months of volunteering to assist Pottawatomie County with matters of public safety, Nicholas Sampson was named the assistant emergency management director by the county commissioners on Monday, June 28.

According to Sampson, he is honored to join the Pottawatomie County public safety team.

"It feels amazing. I'm blessed to get to work in a county with great commissioner support and elected official support from all levels of government inside the county," Sampson said.

He said he has been friends with Emergency Management Director Chad Larman for quite some time. After Larman was hired, he asked Sampson to help out.

"Of course I jumped on that opportunity and it just went from there," Sampson said.

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Nicholas Sampson was named the Assistant Emergency Management Director for Pottawatomie County.

Before joining Pott. County, Sampson said he began his career in public safety as a volunteer firefighter for the Sparks Fire Department in 2009.

He then transferred to the Chandler Fire Department, where he worked for a decade before working as emergency manager in Lincoln County.

"Then a year after that I was the deputy director for Lincoln County and I was with them until 2019," Sampson said.

During this whole time, Sampson received his public safety education through online schooling. 

He explained he took a break for the last few years but continued his public safety schooling.

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"I'm actually an Infinite Command System instructor for Oklahoma Homeland Security and Oklahoma State Fire Service Training out of Stillwater," Sampson said. "I teach ICS all over the state of Oklahoma."

For Sampson, the best aspects of working in public safety are the people and the job itself.

"My love for public safety is what it is. I love the public and I love what we do and I love all aspects of it," Sampson said.

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When he worked at Lincoln County, Sampson was deployed to North Carolina to assist with a hurricane and he worked there for two weeks as the operation sections chief.

"I controlled all movement of public safety inside the county for the hurricane and it was a great experience," Sampson said.

He is happy to return to his work in a county he hopes will be one of the top emergency management agencies in the state.

Under his new position, Sampson will be helping Larman with all matters of public safety including safety trainings, flood plain, Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Association compliance certificates and more.

"I (also) handle all of the radio communications for the emergency management," Sampson said.

The public safety worker is looking forward to helping the people of Pottawatomie County.

"We're looking to put Pottawatomie County as (an entity) anybody in the state of Oklahoma and surrounding states can call upon in their time of need and know we'll be there and we can handle any situation," Sampson said.