Sturdifen retires after 23 years with Virginia State Police

Dale Sturdifen

After 23 years of protecting and serving Mecklenburg citizens, Dale Sturdifen has retired from the Virginia State Police. Sturdifen began his stint with the Virginia State Police (VSP) in Stafford County in 1997. From Stafford, he moved to Prince William County, and then on to Mecklenburg where he has settled. He served as a trooper in Mecklenburg County for 5 years before being promoted to Special Agent.

When asked why he started on this career path, Sturdifen stated, “When I was young, my brother and cousin were involved in a [fatal] accident. I saw from the accident a picture of a Virginia State Trooper car; that inspired me to want to be a trooper to help prevent those types of accidents.” Since his beginning on the force, Sturdifen has certainly seen his fair share of motor vehicle accidents and has helped many grateful families.

Hundreds flocked to Facebook to thank him for his service January 31. Well wishers shared that they hope he enjoys a well-deserved retirement after all of his service to the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Many will remember that Sturdifen also served Mecklenburg County as a member of the School Board. Sturdifen was a board member for about seven years, during which time he also made a bid for the 15th Districts Senate seat. He was a major proponent for term limits on career politicians such as his rival Senator Frank Ruff. While he was ultimately beaten by Senator Ruff, Sturdifen provided multiple talking points during his run.

Sturdifen was also an advocate for the unification of Mecklenburg Schools, and was present for the ceremonial breaking of new ground on the new school in 2019. He served as Chairman for the School Board in both 2016 and 2019 before his departure from the board in 2019. He was succeeded by Gloria Smith after declining to seek re-election.

In our interview, Sturdifen stated that his favorite part of the job was, “the ability to help people in need. That was definitely the best part as a trooper and an agent.” We at The News Progress believe that Mr. Sturdifen has definitely gone above and beyond to help the Commonwealth’s citizens. Sturdifen also shared a parting word of advice for junior officers: “Remember why you came and enjoy the opportunity that’s been given to you, because a lot of people aren’t afforded the opportunity to serve in that way.”

We thank Dale for his time and his efforts to improve Mecklenburg County, and look forward to seeing his future ventures.