BUCHANAN CO., Va. (WJHL) — Allen Boyd has been busy the past week preparing to take command of the Buchanan County Sheriff’s Office.

Boyd defeated Incumbent John McClanahan by roughly 20% in the Nov. 7 general election.

Boyd has spent 21 years working with the Virginia State Police but said he decided it was time for a change.

“I care about this county. I’m from here. I know most of these people,” said Boyd. “I felt like there was a need there to improve some things, and at some point, you get tired of complaining about things and say, ‘I’m going to do something about it if I can.'”

Through talking to members of the community, Boyd said he feels there are things he can do to improve the sheriff’s office.

“We have a good group of men and women at the sheriff’s office,” said Boyd. “I think with a little bit of leadership, a little bit of accountability, I think that will go a long way. We want to build it into a sheriff’s office that we can be proud of.”

Boyd said he wants his deputies to be more present in the community. He’s considering adding a few programs, including some to help address a county drug problem and interdiction teams to help address issues in a more timely manner.

He said he’s grateful for the help he’s received so far from McClanahan.

“He contacted me and said that he would work with me and make a smooth transition,” said Boyd. “I can’t say enough good things about him for that. Just shows how much he cares about this county also.”

“I am grateful to have had the honor to serve Buchanan County as their sheriff these past four years,” John McClanahan told News Channel 11. “As we prepare for the upcoming administration change, I will do everything I can to help facilitate a smooth transition for the office. I wish the new sheriff-elect, Allen Boyd, the best of luck as he has inherited some amazing employees.”

Boyd will take office on Jan. 1, 2024.