Captain Vance Hill, whom Sheriff George Caldwell called his 'right-hand man,' was promoted to chief deputy during Monday's meeting of the Brown County Commissioners.

With the recent retirement of Bobby Duvall in the Brown County Sheriff’s Office, a void was created in the chief deputy position.

Sheriff George Caldwell filled that void Monday morning during Brown County Commissioners’ Court with the promotion of Captain Vance Hill to the chief deputy position, citing Hill as his “right-hand man.”

“I propose to increase Vance Hill to (chief deputy) and move James Stroop from his position as sergeant to Vance Hill’s (captain) position,” Sheriff Caldwell said.

Sheriff Caldwell said the moves could be done “without any change in the budget overall.”

“We can cover this,” Sheriff Caldwell said.

According to Sheriff Caldwell, Hill’s increase in pay will be $7,586 and there would “be no increase in the budget. Stroop’s pay would increase $12,337.68, the base starting pay for captain, according to Sheriff Caldwell.

County Judge Ray West said the promotions were “fine,” and that, “We don’t want to move Vance into the chief deputy position and see him has a reduction in his salary.”

Sheriff Caldwell ensured Judge West that Hill’s pay would increase. Judge West, looking at Hill and smiling, said, “That is probably too much,” as laughter ensued.

The moves were approved unanimously.

Chief Deputy Hill is “excited” about the promotion.

“I am getting an opportunity to serve the employees of the sheriff’s office and the citizens of the county,” he said. “Sheriff Caldwell had been talking about the promotion the last couple of weeks, I guess. I am proud that he has the confidence in me to run the Sheriff’s Office in this capacity.

“I’m still going to be hands-on on the day-to-day operations of the department. I’m not going to remove myself from anything the Sheriff’s Office has or will have going on. I will be as involved as I can be.

“We are just going to continue with fighting crime in an aggressive manner.”

Brent Addleman is managing editor of the Brownwood Bulletin. He can be reached by calling 325-641-3110, or email Twitter: @BWD_Editor.