SAN ANTONIO -- Susan Pamerleau is a high-ranking retired military leader. But the current sheriff is asking voters to consider if that has really prepared her to run the sheriff's department.
A small crowd joined Pamerleau in front of the Bexar County Jail Thursday, where she unveiled her plan for managing the sheriff's office. With more campaign money, Pamerleau has been running ads blasting Sheriff Amadeo Ortiz for doing a poor job with a budget she says totals $100 million.
"I've got experience in the public and private sector of leading organizations, managing budgets and budgets much larger than the sheriff's office,." Pamerleau told us.
Pamerleau is a former USAA executive and retired U.S. Air Force Major General with 40 years of leadership experience. However, Pamerleau is not a certified peace officer.
“You can't come into a major law enforcement agency without any law enforcement experience," said Bexar County Sheriff Amadeo Ortiz.
Ortiz said his career in law enforcement spans 40 years. This is his first term as sheriff. Many people have criticized how Ortiz has managed the jail.
"She doesn't realize these are bad guys up to no good, and we are going to have problems," said Ortiz.
Pamerleau says she has a three-point plan to clean things up and re-organize staffing and is prepared to work hard.
Records show there are just three woman in the state who are sheriffs.
"This isn't about gender. This isn't about party politics," argued Pamerleau. "This is about who can best get the job done."