March is designated as National Women’s History Month and we’re honoring the many talented women who work for the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office. Through the month, we’ll be highlighting various employees through a series of “The Women of CCPO” interviews to give a small glimpse into the important work they do.
Paris Johnson – Grand Jury Detective
Q: What does Women’s History Month mean to you?
Paris Johnson (PJ): Women’s History Month to me is a time when the achievements and contributions of women from all backgrounds are celebrated and recognized.
Q: What woman did you look up to as a young girl and who do you look up to now? Why?
PJ: As a young girl, I admired many women in my family, some of whom were single mothers, hairstylists, and service members. I still look up to these women because they have contributed to my growth and the woman I am today.
Q: What do you do at the CCPO? What led you to become a detective?
PJ: Here at the CCPO, I am a Detective with the Grand Jury Unit and I handle and investigate incoming cases. Becoming a Detective was always a goal of mine. I knew at a young age I wanted to have a career in Law Enforcement. I was able to gain experience as a patrol officer, which led to a career in Detective work.
Q: You were hired right at the start of the pandemic. How have you overcome the obstacles presented when trying to navigate a new job and office during this time? Do you have any words of advice for others who are starting jobs or careers in this climate?
PJ: When the pandemic first started, it interrupted everyday operations. There was the fear of the unknown when it came to transitioning to a new job, but I overcame this fear by keeping my faith and believing the process would work out for me. My advice for others starting a career in this climate is to believe in the process and don’t get discouraged!
Q: You’ve been a member of the New Jersey National Guard for 10 years now. What made you want to join and how do you think that aids you in your role as a detective?
PJ: My father was a Veteran and many other family members have served in the military as well. I grew up hearing Military stories and I, too, wanted to serve my country. My military background aids my role as a Detective because there are many qualities you must posses in both fields. Some of those qualities are professionalism, selfless service, and integrity.
Q: What is the most rewarding part of your job?
PJ: The most rewarding aspect is strengthening the relationship with citizens and making communities safer.
Q: If someone wants to become a Detective, where do they start and what words of encouragement do you have?
PJ: To become a Detective, I would recommend starting at a local police department to gain experience and to get an understanding of police work. My words of encouragement would be to follow your dreams to get the job you desire!
Q: What message would you share with the young women of the world?
PJ: I would share a quote from former First Lady Michelle Obama, “There is no limit to what we as women can accomplish.”
Q: According to Data USA, 73.1% of detectives are male. Why is it important to have female detectives and why should more women consider this as a career option?
PJ: Having female detectives is important because it allows young women to see that law enforcement is not just a male occupation. More women should consider it because a career in Law Enforcement is very rewarding.