MPPD lieutenant announces retirement, sergeant gets promoted

Lt. Don Sytsema. Courtesy Photo | Munt Pleasant Police Department

After serving in the Mount Pleasant Police Department for more than 26 years, Lt. Don Sytsema will be retiring Oct. 8 .

Sytsema started his career with the MPPD as an officer. He became a detective in 2012 and a lieutenant in 2017. While at MPPD, Sytsema served as the Youth Services Unit officer, field training officer, evidence technician and forensic interviewer. 

As a forensic interviewer, he would interview children who were victims of physical abuse and sexual assault. He also supervised the field training unit, road patrol, detective bureau and public information function. Sytsema said the teamwork at MPPD was what resonated with him the most while working there.

“My fondest memory is not an isolated incident, time or place," Systema said. "Rather, it is more than 26 years of working together as a team and accomplishing a shared vision, goal and mission."

Sgt. Brandon Bliss has been promoted to lieutenant and will assume his new duties once Sytsema retires. 

Bliss has more than 16 years of law enforcement experience, with 13 of those years with the MPPD. 

Sgt. Brandon Bliss. Courtesy Photo | Mount Pleasant Police Department

While at MPPD, Bliss has served as Youth Services Unit Officer, team leader for the Emergency Services Team, been a lead sergeant for the Field Training Program and held union leadership roles with the Police Officers Association of Michigan and the Command Officers Association of Michigan. 

Bliss has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Saginaw Valley State University and a master’s degree in Public Administration from Central Michigan University. Throughout his career he has also completed Michigan State University’s First Line Supervision Program as well as attending various other supervisory and leadership schools.