School resource officer part of Baldwin Schools' safety plan

BALDWIN, Mich. — Lake County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Cheyanne Keena didn’t envision herself working in a school environment when coming up through the ranks in her policing career. Ultimately, she discovered it’s right where she belonged. 

Keena was named Baldwin Community Schools' school resource officer in 2022, and she is charged with protecting the safety of Baldwin Elementary and Baldwin Junior-Senior High schools students and staff every school day. 

“Becoming an SRO had never been part of my career plan until last year, and I’m so glad I jumped at the opportunity when it came knocking,” Keena said. “I’m honored to help ensure our kids can learn in a safe, inclusive and welcoming learning environment. Baldwin Community Schools is home to so many bright, talented and big-hearted students and staff, and I am very fortunate to be here.” 

Keena’s policing career began seven years ago as an officer for the city of Evart, then as a deputy for the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office. She joined the Lake County Sheriff’s Office last year, transitioning into her role as district SRO.

Much like a road patrol officer, she wears many hats throughout the day. Her main task is helping ensure the physical safety of students and staff. She also helps lead active shooter and other safety drills with school officials and local first responders.

Keena is currently in the process of conducting a site assessment to help identify ways to enhance security in both schools.

A key part of the job is developing positive relationships with students. For Keena, this has included reading to elementary school students, giving classroom presentations on internet safety and bullying, and working one-on-one with students to help resolve their concerns. 

“It’s never been more important to help ensure the safety of our students, and our training, site assessment and other proactive measures help us be prepared in any possible situation,” she said. “It has been such a joy getting to know these future leaders of our community and having the opportunity to show them police officers are people, too.”

“Deputy Keena is playing a central role in our continuing efforts to help ensure all Panthers can learn in a safe environment as they prepare for success and careers,” Baldwin Community Schools superintendent David Forrester said. “We look forward to our continued work with her and the Lake County Sheriff’s Department to provide the latest safety and security training to keep our students and staff safe.”