Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security Commissioner Bill Gibbons and Tennessee Highway Patrol Colonel Tracy Trott on Wednesday announced the appointment of the first female Major of the Highway Patrol. This is the highest rank held by a woman in the history of the Highway Patrol.
Betty Blair, who has served as Captain over the Inspectional Services Bureau (formerly the Office of Professional Responsibility) has been named Major and will be assigned as the Executive Officer to the Colonel. Major Blair has been part of the Inspectional Services Bureau (ISB) since 1999, first as a trooper assigned to the Accreditation Team. She rose through the ranks of sergeant and lieutenant of the Staff Inspection and Accreditation Team, becoming Captain over the entire ISB in 2009. Blair started her career with the THP 1994 as a Road Trooper assigned to the Cookeville District. Prior to her service in the THP, Blair worked for the Department from 1983-1993 as a Driver License Examiner, Training Coordinator, and Issuance Manager. Blair is a graduate of the Northwestern Police Staff and Command School and was nominated by her classmates and instructors to receive the Kremel Leadership Award. She completed the Reid Technique of Interviewing and Interrogation and Advanced Reid Technique Interviewing and Interrogation courses.
“Betty Blair has been instrumental in the THP’s accreditation process. She has helped us raise the bar as a law enforcement agency, and I am proud to promote her to Major,” Col. Trott said. “With her administrative knowledge and experience, I know Major Blair will further be an asset to me and the entire command staff,” he added.
Commissioner Gibbons and Colonel Trott also announced the appointment of Captain Vic Donoho to the Inspectional Services Bureau, a position he previously held from 2007-2009 before being named Captain of the THP’s Nashville District headquarters. Donoho has held various other positions throughout his career as a state trooper, including a year in Washington, DC, with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. He also served as Administrative Lieutenant in the Cookeville District, a Road Lieutenant in Robertson, Davidson, Macon, Trousdale, Smith, and DeKalb Counties, and as a Lieutenant in the Planning and Research Division. Donoho spent four years assigned to Executive Security Detail at the Governor’s Residence, where he was promoted to Sergeant. Donoho began his career with the THP in 1989 as Road Trooper in Van Buren and White Counties. He is a graduate of the NHTSA Officer Leadership program, a graduate of the Northwestern Police School Staff and Command and attended Volunteer State Community College. Donoho also completed 40 hours of Internal Affairs training conducted by the Institute of Police Technology and Management (IPTM), and the Reid Technique of Interviewing and Interrogation and Advanced Reid Technique Interviewing and Interrogation courses.
“Leading the Inspectional Services Bureau is one of our most important assignments. With the promotion of Major Blair, I believe Captain Donoho’s leadership and investigative skills are needed to fill this vacancy and maintain the level of professionalism the Department has earned over the past several years,” said Commissioner Gibbons.