Fayette County

Her leadership makes history for the Lexington police department

Lexington police Sgt. Thomasena G. Grider
Lexington police Sgt. Thomasena G. Grider Provided by the Lexington Police Department

For the first time, a black woman has been promoted to the Lexington Police Department’s rank of sergeant.

Sgt. Thomasena Grider has been with the department for 13 years, according to its Thursday announcement. For the last four years, Grider worked as a detective in the special victims section’s crimes against children unit. She’s also part of the department’s crisis negotiation unit.

In the police department’s release, Grider said working with children has been the most rewarding part of her career.

As she was working toward a promotion, Grider knew she would be making history, according to the police department. But she did not let that affect how she approached the process.

“I’m glad to have that happen,” Grider said. “I’m glad to be a part of the history of the department. It’s also a little different feeling because it’s 2019. So there’s that side of it as well. Hopefully, most people will see that we’re making strides toward something different.”

Grider said she’s looking forward to her new position and is proud to be a role model for others.

“Don’t wait for someone that looks like you to be the person to make that change,” Grider said. “If I would have waited for someone that was a minority female, I may not be in the position that I’m in right now.”

Grider is a graduate of the University of Kentucky and Paul Laurence Dunbar High School.

Moving from day-shift detective to sergeant means Grider is a leader of 3rd shift patrol, working overnight.