RANCHO CORDOVA, Calif. — She’s a mother, lawyer, and a police officer — Sergeant Tess Deterding of Sacramento does it all.
The 36-year-old has worked in law enforcement for 12 years. She currently works on the Rancho Cordova Police Department assignment for the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department.
Since she was a young girl, Sgt. Deterding wanted to go into law enforcement, she said.
“As we all know it’s a particularly interesting time to be in law enforcement but I think that that just means that there’s opportunity, right,” Deterding said.
Millions of people around the world celebrated International Women’s Day on March 8 and Americans will continue to honor Women’s History Month all through March.
Deterding says she is happy to be working in a position where she can interact with the community and create a positive relationship and image of police.
Along the way, she says she has looked up to a lot of women.
“A person that displays, you know confidence and poise, but also has that, you know, very feminine gentle side that is relatable,” Deterding said of former Rancho Cordova Police Chief, Roseanne Richeal.”
Though she's had women to look up to, when you look a the big picture - only 12 percent of the full-time local police officers in the United States are female. This means that men continue to dominate the field of law enforcement in America, according to U.S. Department of Justice data.
“For me you know it’s like reflecting on you know the trials and tribulations of women that came before us in any profession really,” Deterding said.
Being a working mother does come with its challenges, she said, telling ABC10 that her son is only three-years-old.
“You know, you're torn a lot of times, right,” Deterding said. "Between giving everything to a profession and then also being...fully present for your kids.”
For anyone pursuing their career, she offered the following words of wisdom:
“Don’t ever let anybody change your dream. If this is where you feel in your heart that you are supposed to be, then there’s a place here for you.”