Once the Knox County Sheriff’s Detention Facility was opened, Chief Purvis was one of the first direct supervision pod officers for the agency. He was selected to be a part of the very first American Corrections Association Accreditation Officers for the Knox County Sheriff’s Office. He participated in the National Institute of Corrections and the American Corrections Association’s first audit of the Knox County Sheriff’s Detention Facility.
Chief Purvis came to the Knox County sheriff’s Office after serving in the United States Army as a Military Policeman. He began his career at the Knox County Jail where he worked as a security officer, medical officer, identification officer and inmate physical fitness coordinator.
He moved to the Training Division and was promoted to corporal, and then to sergeant and reassigned as the Facility Security Director and to the Knox County Criminal Justice Center Transition Team. He was then assigned as the Court Services Supervisor, where he remained until being appointed as the Knox County Detention Facility Assistant Facility Commander for two (2) years as a lieutenant. In 2000, he was promoted to captain.
In 2002, William was moved to the Personnel Division until 2005, when he was reassigned as the Facility Commander of the Knox County Sheriff’s Detention Facility. There he was promoted to Assistant Chief in 2006, and Chief Jailer in January 2008.
William lives with his wife Denise in North Knoxville. They have three children; two sons, Robert and James, and one daughter Ashlynne.