VB Sheriff Rocky Holcomb announces promotion of new chief deputy
VIRGINIA BEACH – Sheriff Rocky Holcomb today announced the promotion of Capt. Alvie Culanding to chief deputy.
Chief Deputy Culanding has served the Virginia Beach Sheriff’s Office (VBSO) for 26 years and is the first Filipino to rise to the rank of chief deputy in Virginia Beach. He succeeds Rocky Holcomb, who was sworn in as sheriff on Sept. 29, 2023.
Chief Deputy Culanding will oversee VBSO Administration, which includes Court Security, Training, Human Resources and Finance. He will serve alongside Chief Deputy of Operations Tina Mapes.
“Chief Deputy Alvie Culanding represents the very best of the Virginia Beach Sheriff’s Office,” said Sheriff Holcomb. “He has valiantly served the citizens of Virginia Beach for the last 26 years and will make an absolutely superb chief deputy.”
Chief Deputy Culanding joined the VBSO in July 1997 and has served in nearly every division. He was promoted to captain in 2017 and, in that role, commanded the Correctional Support and Court Security divisions.
In addition, the Filipino American Community Action Group (FILAM CAG) on Oct. 1, 2023, honored Chief Deputy Culanding with the 2023 FILAM CAG Leadership Award, calling him “a beacon of inspiration and a symbol of unparalleled dedication and resilience.” In 2022, he was named one of Hampton Roads’ Top Filipino History Makers and Shakers by FILM CAG and the National Federation of Filipino American Associations – Capital Region.
His full biography is below.
“The VBSO’s demographics have always reflected the community we serve. That is important, and Sheriff Rocky Holcomb and Undersheriff Brian Struzzieri recognize that there’s strength in diversity,” said Chief Deputy Culanding. “For me, being promoted as the first Filipino American chief deputy in the Virginia Beach Sheriff’s Office and one of very few, if any, in Virginia, is a point of pride. Regardless of my heritage, promotions are earned, and I am grateful for this opportunity.”
“It is a great honor, privilege and responsibility to uphold my oath of office while also representing the Filipino community and those immigrants who worked so hard to find opportunities and provide their families with a better life. I stand on the shoulders of those giants,” said Chief Deputy Culanding.
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Chief Deputy Alvie Culanding Biography
Chief Deputy Alvie “Cool” Culanding has served the Virginia Beach Sheriff’s Office (VBSO) since 1997 and, prior to his promotion to chief deputy in October 2023, served as captain of the Courts Division, overseeing Court Security, Civil Process, Transportation, Emergency Management, the Crisis Negotiation Team and Fleet Management. He is the first Filipino to serve as chief deputy in Virginia Beach.
Chief Deputy Culanding grew up in Virginia Beach and graduated from Green Run High School. He earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology from Norfolk State University and went on to work as a mental health technician at Norfolk Community Hospital before joining the VBSO. He has also completed graduate work through Virginia State Police and the University of Virginia’s National Criminal Justice Command College, attended the West Point Leadership Course and completed the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) Officer training program.
Chief Deputy Culanding has served in the VBSO Professional Standards Office, Correctional Operations, Intake/Release, Court Security/Civil Process/Transportation, Training and Medical. He was a member of the Emergency Response Team from 1998-2011, is a general instructor certified by the Virginia Department of Criminal Justice Services and specializes in defensive tactics. He is also a strong proponent for physical fitness and completes the VBSO LawFit program twice per year.
Outside of work, Chief Deputy Culanding is a co-founding member of the Filipino American Law Enforcement Officers Association of Virginia (FALEOAVA). He is a regular blood donor for the American Red Cross and contributes to the United Way. He also volunteers his time to the annual United Way Day of Caring, the March of Dimes, National Night Out, Special Olympics Virginia, Green Run Elementary School and Seatack Elementary School, where he’s served as a mentor since 1999. Chief Deputy Culanding has also participated as a cyclist with the Police Unity Tour and Law Enforcement United Road to Hope, a 250-mile bike ride from Chesapeake, Virginia, to Washington, D.C. The ride honors fallen law enforcement officers and raises money to support their families.
He and his wife, Liza, have been married for 27 years and have four children, Rizal, Cezar, Clara and Cyann. In his free time, he enjoys hunting and surfing with family and friends.