About AHSO

The Highway Safety Office of the Arkansas State Police coordinates a statewide behavioral highway safety program making effective use of federal and state highway safety funds and other resources to save lives and reduce injuries on the State’s roads. We provide leadership, innovation, and program support in partnership with traffic safety advocates, law enforcement professionals, and safety organizations.

The Highway Safety Office (HSO) administers federal highway funds from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and oversees the highway safety program efforts supported by these funds for the State of Arkansas.

Staff Spotlight

Born and raised in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, Alton now lives in Little Rock. Currently, he is the Arkansas Highway Safety Office (AHSO) Law Enforcement Liaison (LEL) Program Manager. Alton’s previous position as a United States Probation Officer for twenty-five years provided him with valuable experience and connections throughout Arkansas. When Alton is not working, he enjoys playing the piano, which is a pastime from his childhood. Alton is known for his dogged determination and persistence with gaining participants to the STEP programs. We, at AHSO celebrate the 50 law enforcement agencies that are on board with the STEPS Program. Great job Sir, for your dedication toward increasing those numbers!

Meet the Team

Bridget White

Highway Safety Office Administrator

Bridget’s career in highway safety has spanned over thirty years. Currently she is the Highway Safety Office Administrator in the Division of Arkansas State Police. A long-time resident of Little Rock, Bridget enjoys spending time with her family. She is especially looking forward to visiting the Netherlands to meet her five-month-old granddaughter in person for the first time. Additionally, we at AHSO respect and honor her thirty-year commitment to excellence in public service. It is commendable. Congratulations, Bridget!

Debra Hollis

Highway Safety Office Manager

Debra is the Arkansas Highway Safety Office Manager at the Arkansas State Police Division for thirteen years. However, she has been in public service with the state of Arkansas for over twenty years. Debra is known for her compassion and care for people, she has that unique marathon ability to communicate, “I’m in it for the long haul with you.” When she is not serving Arkansas citizens, Debra enjoys running including her first full marathon in November 2021, which is a total of 26.2 miles. We at AHSO believe she can do it! Way to go Debra!

Chip Payne

Program Manager, Impaired Driving, STEPS

Originally from Little Rock, Chip was a United States Probation Officer for twenty-three years. He is now with the Arkansas Highway Safety Office in the State Police Division, as a Program Manager for Impaired Driving and STEPS. A fun fact about Chip that people may not know is when he was in high school, he was the lead guitarist in a rock band called the ‘Checkmates.’ Although an elder to a few at AHSO, we enjoy your ‘hip side’ but even more we depend on your wisdom and insight in program management. Rock on, Chip!

Michael Catanach

Program Manager, E-Grants, STEPS

After working as a Boll Weevil Eradicator throughout the south for over fifteen years, Mike’s work eventually led him to Arkansas; traveling all the way from Andrews, Texas. As a team member of the Arkansas Highway Safety Office (AHSO), he currently serves as a Program Manager for E-Grants and STEPS. If you know Mike, you know that he is a family man, but what you may not know about him is that he loves to light up the grill and cook for his friends and family. Michael is an excellent communicator and an asset to the AHSO. Light the way, Michael! Oh, and invite us next time you decide to light up the grill.

Cindy Grisham

Program Manager, Traffic Records, FARS Supervisor

Originally from West Plains, Missouri, Cindy has over twenty years of involvement in law enforcement, her official title here at the Arkansas Highway Safety Office (AHSO) is Traffic Records and FARS Data Manager but we know her as our resident ‘Data Cruncher.’ Cindy resides in Benton, Arkansas along with her Golden Retriever Penny and her black cat Sheldon. If you know Cindy, then you know Penny and Sheldon are both a part of the AHSO family. Because of her excellent work as resident ‘Data Cruncher’ and the many other hats she wears, we at the AHSO salute her for being an outstanding team player. Thank you, Cindy!

Gerald Buford

HSO Fiscal Accounting Manager

Gerald is from Cabot, Arkansas. His previous role as a Financial Resource Officer at Arvest Bank provided him with a valuable background for his current role as a Fiscal Accounting Manager here at Arkansas Highway Safety Office (AHSO). Gerald is known as our ‘finance guy’ but what people may not know about him is that he is an avid collector of fountain pens and has an impressive collection at home. Gerald’s quiet professionalism is an asset to the AHSO. Gerald, keep up the great work!

Earma Brown

Program Manager, Public Information & Education

A native Arkansan, Earma is a widow enjoying a fresh start after working in Dallas, Texas for twenty-five years as an Indie Publisher. As the PI&E Program Manager, she came to the Arkansas Highway Safety Office from Lee County Sheriff’s Office as a Night Shift Dispatcher. An interesting fact, you might not know about Earma is she taught a Bible class for over ten years to Dallas County women inmates in maximum security. Thank you Earma for inspiring us at AHSO to become the best version of ourselves.

Gwen Vernon

Senior FARS Analyst

Gwen has been a public servant for the State of Arkansas for over forty years. A North Little Rock native, Gwen began her career as a Document Examiner, now with the Arkansas Highway Safety Office (AHSO) she is a Senior FARS (Fatal Accident Reporting System) Analyst. Although Gwen’s role and responsibilities have increased and her current work requires more mental agility than physical, she still finds time to serve her community through various organizations and ministry. Gwen loves music, dancing and spending time with her family and friends. We at AHSO love your energy for life. It’s contagious. Keep on dancing, Gwen!

Julie Mundy

FARS Analyst

Originally from North Little Rock, Julie has been an Arkansas State employee for thirty-six years. Her work as a Document Examiner and Data Entry Operator prepared her for the work she does in her current role as a FARS (Fatal Accident Reporting System) Analyst at the Arkansas Highway Safety Office (AHSO). An interesting thing about Julie is she not only helps others through the AHSO; she rescued her fifteen-year-old dog Cody from an animal shelter when he was young. She and her husband Mark enjoy participating in friendly shooting competitions. Additionally, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, especially her grand babies. Julie, we honor your faithful commitment to the state of Arkansas. You are a valuable resource to AHSO!

Diane Spencer

Administrative Specialist I

An Administrative Specialist at the Arkansas Highway Safety Office (AHSO) for five years and counting, Diane is from Alexander where she continues to reside. She thrives in her position as an Administrative Specialist and enjoys being able to build connections with her co-workers. In addition to her job in administration, Diane is also the mother to three loving children. We at AHSO cheer your quiet determination in leading the way to the place called Data-Entry-Success in Crash Reports! You are a treasured resource to the AHSO team.

Hailie Heavner

Administrative Specialist

Hailie began her position as a part-time Administrative Specialist but now enjoys working full-time at the Arkansas Highway Safety Office (AHSO). Now residing in Bryant, Arkansas, she is originally from Sheridan. In Hailie’s role in administration, she enjoys most the opportunity to analyze crash reports and make a difference behind the scenes. Outside of her work at the AHSO, Hailie is a cat mom to five adorable cats. Your diligence has been outstanding in catching up the crash report data entry back-log. We at AHSO applaud your efforts with the finish line in sight of finally being caught up!

Peyton Reeves

HSO Intern

Originally from Moro Arkansas, Peyton is a senior this Fall at UCA, the University of Central Arkansas. Peyton was placed with the Department of Public Safety and worked in the Arkansas Highway Safety Office (AHSO) researching pedestrian and bicycle crash fatalities in Arkansas. Although Peyton is without a doubt a brainy act, in her down time, Peyton admits she loves hiking and visiting different national parks. Her all-time favorite expedition was a 12-mile hike in the Grand Canyon. We at AHSO enjoyed your impactful stint as our Intern. Best wishes for success in your education and upcoming career!