Ken Kippley, School Resource Officer (SRO) with Morrow County Sheriff’s Office recently returned from a deployment to Kosovo. Deputy Kippley has been an SRO for Heppner and Ione schools since 2018. Kippley joined the Army National Guard approximately 20 years ago and continues to serve as a Medic with his monthly and yearly trainings. His last deployment was sudden and landed him on a plane to Kosovo in December of 2019.

 While in Kosovo, he served as the Joint Implementation Commission Operations NCO. Shortly after he landed in Kosovo, the Coronavirus hit and changed the course of his deployment. Kippley spent time assisting with a non-profit known as Play2Educate. According to their website,, the mission of this non-profit is to ‘cultivate positive relationship development among youth to promote tolerance and foster resilience focused on preventing religious, political, and ethnic extremism, conflict, and violence.’ As you can see in the attached photo, he enjoyed his time spent with the youth of the area.

Due to the lockdowns from Covid, Kippley said he had a lot of time during his deployment for ‘personal improvement’ including completing his Associate’s Degree from Blue Mountain Community College, earning his Advanced certification from the Oregon Department of Public Safety Standards and Training (DPSST). He also received his ham radio operator license. As seen in another photo, Kippley also was able to work on his physical fitness and lost 30 pounds over the course of his deployment, although some of that can be attributed to the ‘horrible food’.

Following a mandatory stop in Texas to quarantine, Kippley returned to Oregon in December 2020. He is back to work as our local SRO and plans on continuing his career in the National Guard and Morrow County Sheriff’s Office. Thank you for your service Deputy Kippley and for your dedication to the students of South Morrow County.