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Back to Archives | Back to January 2008 Contents 

2007 IACP Awards

Click here to view this article with photos of award winners.

he IACP awards program supports the association’s mission to advance the art and science of policing. The awards recognize outstanding achievement by law enforcement organizations and individuals. Applications for IACP awards undergo rigorous evaluation to ensure that only the most deserving recipients receive recognition.

Police Officer of the Year
The IACP and PARADE magazine join forces to recognize exemplary performance in police work. As one of the top law enforcement awards in the country, the Police Officer of the Year Award symbolizes the highest level of achievement among police officers. In addition, 10 officers are selected for honorable-mention awards. Recipients are recognized in PARADE magazine, during the IACP General Assembly, and at an awards luncheon at the annual IACP conference. All sworn, full-time police officers below the rank of chief are eligible. Nominations may be made for exceptional achievement in any police endeavor, including but not limited to extraordinary valor, crime prevention, investigative work, community relations, traffic safety, drug control and prevention, juvenile programs, and training efforts.

In the middle of the night on December 30, 2006, Officer Gilbert and his partner, Officer John McKee, were following a vehicle that had been carjacked. When the driver suddenly stopped and fled down an alley, Gilbert gave chase on foot. McKee followed in the patrol car as the suspect ran into a parking lot. “The guy ran behind my car,” McKee recalls, “and I got out and went to tackle him. He reached over and shot me in the face. I didn’t know he had a gun.” Officer Gilbert ran to his injured partner and started firing back at the suspect. “This guy was not going down,” he recalls. Maneuvering between McKee and the gunman, Gilbert fired 11 times. The suspect died at the hospital later that night. “Roy saved my life, most definitely,” says McKee, who is returning to patrol following months of recovery. “If Roy hadn’t been there, the guy would’ve finished me off.” Despite his heroic actions that night, Gilbert shrugs off the hero label. “I hate to look at it like that,” he says. “I did what partners are supposed to do.”

In addition, 13 officers will receive honorable mentions at the Police Service Awards luncheon: Sergeant Allen Albaugh, Maryland State Police Department; Sergeant A. J. DeAndrea, Arvada, Colorado, Police Department; Senior Trooper Jacob Dickinson, Louisiana State Police Department; Sergeant Richard Garcia, Houston, Texas, Police Department; Captain J. E. “Chip” Harding, Charlottesville, Virginia, Police Department; Officer Deon Joseph, Los Angeles Police Department; Detective Sergeant Sy Ray, Gilbert, Arizona, Police Department; Patrolman James Roese, Middletown, New Jersey, Police Department; Detective Marcos Saenko, Coventry, Rhode Island, Police Department; and Sergeant Andrew Williams, Deputy Sheriff Michael Parker, Deputy Sheriff Billy Osborne, and Deputy Sheriff David Clements, Polk County, Florida, Sheriff’s Office.

This year’s honorees are being recognized for achievements such as saving a victim from the menacing jaws of an alligator, arresting a notorious breeder and trainer of fighting dogs, bringing down a violent prison gang, and more.

The Police Service Awards were established by PARADE and the IACP in 1966 to focus attention on the dedicated men and women of the U.S. police force. They are given for specific acts of valor, consistent service above and beyond the call of duty, development of innovative programs, and significant service to the community apart from police work.

2008 application due: June 2, 2008
For more information about the IACP/PARADE Police Officer of the Year Award, visit the awards section of the IACP Web site,, or contact Wendy Balazik at the IACP, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2357; by fax at 703-836-4543; by phone at 1-800-THE-IACP, extension 264; or via e-mail at

IACP/Motorola Webber Seavey Award: Quality in Law Enforcement

Jointly sponsored by the IACP and Motorola, the Webber Seavey Award is presented annually to agencies and departments worldwide in recognition for promoting a standard of excellence that exemplifies the law enforcement community's contribution and dedication to the quality of life in local communities. This award program helps law enforcement agencies worldwide and the communities they serve by redefining the concept of law enforcement and how it is routinely performed. The award is named for Webber S. Seavey, the IACP's first president. The program annually honors achievements toward one or more of the following goals:
• Continually improving services to the community
• Strengthening police relations and promoting community participation
• Effectively using resources
• Enhancing communications within and cooperation among agencies
• Developing creative and innovative approaches that promote excellence in law enforcement

Montreal Police Service, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Côte-des-Neiges Traffic Control Initiative
In Montreal’s most populous district, public perception about traffic safety spurred the local police to take action to reduce accidents. A traffic study showed that 40 percent of the district’s accidents occurred on just one road, a main thoroughfare passing through both business and high-rise residential neighborhoods. About 12,000 vehicles use the Côte-des-Neiges daily, and some portions of the road contain three lanes in each direction.

Without increasing personnel, the department instituted a revolving crackdown on several traffic safety violations, including speeding, seat belt nonuse, and driving while impaired. The program, which started about five years ago and is now permanent, showed immediate results. In addition to improving the quality of life in the neighborhood, the program has saved the police force money.

Ottawa Police Service, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Strategic Staffing Initiative
While community involvement has its place, sometimes law enforcement agencies rely on business principles to improve operations. The Ottawa Police Service faced a surge of retirements, burgeoning overtime payments, and new laws guaranteeing officers family leave time. The Strategic Staffing Initiative borrowed manufacturing’s “just-in-time inventory” principle to ensure that trained officers would be in the right place at the right time.

Previously, the agency had to wait for an officer to retire before training a new recruit, often leaving it with a 12-month personnel gap. The agency identified 200 new positions to be filled, with an initial cost estimate of C$13 million. But through prudent planning and organization, the agency hired almost 450 civilians and sworn officers at a cost of about C$6 million. The new staffing arrangements have been accepted politically, but the ultimate beneficiary is the community—more police are on the street.

York Regional Police, Newmarket, Ontario, Canada
YRP Community Guns, Gangs, and Youth Violence Strategy
The York Regional Police (YRP), which protects almost one million people in the suburbs near Toronto, received reports that law-abiding citizens were concerned about youth and gang crime. Although statistics showed the area to be considered safe, the police saw the perception of danger as a challenge to be met head-on. For the first time, the police agency partnered with community groups—parent associations, faith groups, and recreational athletic leagues—to create a widespread antigang strategy.

The agency’s Community Guns, Gangs, and Youth Violence Strategy ties prevention and enforcement efforts much more closely together. It is not enough to tell kids to stay out of gangs; they must be presented with an alternative. The YRP, for instance, helped organize transportation to community recreation centers for youths. Right away it noticed a drop in the types of low-level crimes that kids are known to commit.

2008 application due: May 1, 2008
For more information about the IACP/Motorola Webber Seavey Award: Quality in Law Enforcement, visit the awards section of the IACP Web site,, or contact Wendy Balazik at the IACP, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2357; by fax at 703-836-4543; by phone at 1-800-THE-IACP, extension 264; or via e-mail at

Civil Rights Award

The International Association of Chiefs of Police recognizes that the protection of civil and human rights is among the foremost responsibilities of police agencies in democratic societies. Law enforcement officers are the most visible and largest contingent of a nation’s guardians of civil rights. In order to be effective, a police department and its individual officers must be seen primarily as protectors of civil rights rather than agents of social control whose main purpose is to limit individual freedoms. The effectiveness of police departments in their varied missions—from law enforcement to community service—depends on the trust and confidence of the community. Public trust, cooperation, and partnership between the police and the community are strongest when the community perceives that police respect and uphold individual civil rights.

Beginning with a revised format in 2008, IACP Civil Rights Awards are presented in the following categories:
• Single-Agency Program or Project Award
• Multi-Agency Team Award
• Individual Award
• International Human Rights Award

Recognizing the underappreciated role of police agencies and officers in protecting and promoting civil rights, the IACP Civil Rights Committee established this annual award to honor exceptional agency or individual achievements in this arena. The following are summaries of the three programs that received the 2007 IACP Civil Rights Award, sponsored by the Blackinton Badge Company and the Fechheimer Brother Company.

Ottawa Police Service, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Outreach Recruitment Program
Through its Outreach Recruitment Program, the Ottawa Police Service has developed a deliberate, coordinated, and ground-breaking approach to becoming a diverse and nondiscriminatory police service. As part of its efforts to diversify its sworn personnel, the Ottawa Police Service has raised awareness across the community and has reached out specifically to recruit those segments that have not traditionally sought careers in policing. This strategy relied on working closely will all segments of the community and engaging specialized Outreach Recruitment Champions, tapping into recognized leadership from various communities. The strategy also involved conscious internal efforts to make the Ottawa Police Service a more respectful and welcoming workplace for employees of different ages, faiths, races, lifestyles, needs, disabilities, genders, beliefs, and sexual orientations.

Brookline, Massachusetts, Police Department
Racial Profiling Prevention Strategies
Over the last 10 years, the Brookline Police Department has developed, implemented, and institutionalized a multifaceted racial profiling prevention strategy. This comprehensive approach, implemented throughout the agency, addressed the areas of policy review and development, hiring and recruitment, training, citizen complaints, data collection, and community outreach. This effort also incorporated the use of an early intervention system to track officer performance. Through these coordinated efforts, today’s Brookline Police Department has taken a proactive rather than a reactive approach to racial profiling. In addition, the department is now more reflective of the population it serves and, as a result, stands better prepared to respond to the broad-ranging cultural and language diversity that exists within its community.

Multi-Agency Team Effort
Hate Crime Investigation and Prosecution of the “Avenues Gang” Case
This award is for the exemplary multiagency cooperative effort that resulted in the successful investigation and prosecution of gang related homicides and hate crimes, involving the racially motivated murder of two African Americans and the systematic intimidation and harassment of African Americans in the Highland Park neighborhood of Los Angeles. Known as the Avenues Gang case, the underlying crimes were investigated jointly by the Los Angeles Police Department and the FBI. Through close work with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles and the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, the hate crime perpetrators were convicted in federal court (U.S. v. Saldana). This precedent-setting case is unique not only because of the concerted efforts of local and federal law enforcement but also because it represents the first time that federal hate crime statutes have been used to prosecute racially motivated crimes committed by street gang members.

2008 application due: March 31, 2008
For more information about the IACP Civil Rights Award, visit the awards section of the IACP Web site,, or contact John Markovic at the IACP, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2357; by fax at 703-684-5728; by phone at 1-800-THE-IACP, extension 801; or via e-mail at

Indian Country Police Officer of the Year Award for the United States, First Nations, or Aboriginal Law Enforcement Officers

The purpose of this award is to provide international recognition of police officers having demonstrated exceptional valor in service to the people of Indian Country, thereby exhibiting the highest traditions of the law enforcement profession. The award can recognize police officers who have, by conspicuous acts, clearly distinguished themselves by bravery, heroism, or outstanding courage and have placed the safety and welfare of the people of Indian Country above all other considerations. It can also recognize outstanding, exceptional service for completion of a task or assignment that went beyond the normal call of duty that served to enhance public safety, encourage community involvement, and/or demonstrated an effective use of the culture and traditions of indigenous people in crime prevention, community-oriented policing, or other projects.

The recipient of the 2007 Indian Country Law Enforcement Section’s Officer of the Year Award is Superintendent Shirley Cuillierrier, Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

The RCMP provides public safety for over 600 aboriginal communities and is the federal police for all of Canada’s aboriginal people.

In December 2006, the Assembly of First Nations in Canada voted to approve a national rail blockade on June 29, 2007, as a way to protest land claims resolutions. The government of Canada requested that the RCMP inform the assembly that the action they planned to take on this “national day of action” had the potential of crippling the economy, further isolating First Nations people from the government, and presented concerns for public and officer safety.

Superintendent Cuillierrier was the lead on this six-month planning project and quickly mobilized a team to plan a “measured approach” to this planned protest based on the RCMP community policing model.

Due in large part to her leadership and convictions, as well as the trust she had built between herself and the people of the First Nations, the national day of action was carried out with only minor incidents. The RCMP, as led by Superintendent Cuillierrier, chose to stand beside aboriginal people on their day, sending the message that indeed it is honored to be considered their protectors.

Through Cuillierrier and her team’s planning of the RCMP’s response to this action, her ability to convey her people’s message to her colleagues, partners, and superiors—those who did not understand aboriginal issues—was both compassionate and unwavering. This was perhaps the most important factor in ensuring a successful outcome. Aboriginal people, and the RCMP’s relationship with them, mattered above all else. Superintendent Cuillierrier helped all the internal and external partners to see the issue through an aboriginal lens and avert possible violence.

2008 application due: August 15, 2008
For more information about the IACP Indian Country Law Enforcement Officer of the Year Award, visit the awards section of the IACP Web site,, or contact Elaine Deck at the IACP, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2357; by phone at 1-800-THE-IACP, extension 843; or via e-mail at

Michael Shanahan Award for Excellence in Public/Private Cooperation

The Michael Shanahan Award for Excellence in Public/Private Cooperation, sponsored by the Security Industry Association, honors Chief Michael Shanahan (retired), who served the University of Washington Police Department for 24 years before retiring in 1995. This award recognizes outstanding achievements in the development and implementation of public/private cooperation in public safety.

Chief Shanahan made significant contributions to worldwide public safety when serving as the cochair of the IACP Private Sector Liaison Committee (PSLC) from 1985 to 1999. Under his leadership, the PSLC focused on solutions to critical public/private sector issues such as product tampering, drugs in the workplace, guidelines for nonsworn responders to alarms, workplace and school violence, and hiring and training guidelines for security guards. Chief Shanahan was the chair of the IACP's State Association of Chiefs of Police in 1983–1984. Chief Shanahan is a highly respected national leader, innovator, and advocate who recognizes the critical importance of public/private partnerships in enhancing an individual community's public safety and the cumulative positive impact such collaborative actions have on protecting the vital interests of a community.

Lieutenant Ray Martinez and Detective Kathleen Thompson of the New York City Police Department (NYPD) and Oksana Farber, vice president of operations at Hiram Cohen & Son, Inc., accepted the first annual award on behalf of the NYPD SHIELD Program at a luncheon at the 114th Annual IACP Conference. NYPD SHIELD is an umbrella program for a series of current and future department initiatives that pertain to private-sector security and counterterrorism. This public/private partnership is based on information sharing and serves as a central hub for private-sector security managers to obtain information and engage department resources. The NYPD SHIELD program also gathers information from private-sector partners to assist in the department’s efforts to keep the city safe.

For more information about the Michael Shanahan Award for Excellence in Public/Private Cooperation, visit the awards section of the IACP Web site,, or contact Nancy Kolb at the IACP, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2357; by phone at 1-800-THE-IACP, extension 813; or via e-mail at

Outstanding Achievement in Law Enforcement Volunteer Programs Award

The recipients of the Outstanding Achievement in Law Enforcement Volunteer Programs Award were recognized at a reception on October 16, 2007, during the annual IACP conference. This award, sponsored by Science Applications International Corporation, recognizes volunteer programs that demonstrate innovative, effective practices for augmenting sworn or civilian staff and/or improving service delivery to their communities.

Members of the IACP Police Administration Committee meet annually to judge the award applications and select up to three winning agencies. This year’s three winners were the Bellevue, Washington, Police Department; the Hazelwood, Missouri, Police Department; and the Vacaville, California, Police Department.

Bellevue, Washington, Police Department
The Citizens and Police in Partnership (CAPP) volunteer program of the Bellevue Police Department utilizes 50 volunteers. In 2006, CAPP volunteers reviewed thousands of old case files and identified which could be kept and which could be thrown out; eliminated a year-old backlog of data awaiting entry in the pawn database and created a data retrieval system to help investigators find information more quickly; gathered case reports and suspect information from other jurisdictions that had recovered vehicles stolen in Bellevue, enabling Bellevue detectives to identify 36 car thieves; updated the case tracking system with case dispositions going back to 2001; helped more than 9,100 citizens who visited one of the department’s three community stations; and shuttled the entire patrol fleet (more than 50 vehicles) to and from service appointments 35 miles away. Volunteers also developed the best leads to date in a commercial burglary case by viewing hours of store security tapes, spotting the suspect, documenting everything he touched for subsequent fingerprint recovery, and reviewing hundreds of vehicle licensing documents to help identify the suspect.

Hazelwood, Missouri, Police Department
Members of the volunteer services unit within the Hazelwood Police Department participate in every aspect of the department’s operations. They perform administrative and nonintervention tasks such as entering data, disposing of confidential records, providing limited prisoner supervision, organizing neighborhood watch programs, placing speed radar trailers, assisting victims, and helping maintain police vehicles. Volunteers donate time at the municipal court. During four-hour shifts, the volunteers help set up the courtroom, distribute paperwork, and carry files between the courtroom and the pay window. Volunteers who complete the Hazelwood citizens’ police academy are eligible to participate in a special initiative called the citizen observer patrol. The department trains volunteers to patrol designated areas of the city, watching for and reporting suspect activity, talking to residents and business owners, and generally raising the profile of the Hazelwood Police Department. They look for disabled automobiles, injured persons, fires, and broken windows and open doors at homes and businesses. They also keep an eye out for teenagers who appear to be cutting through yards or otherwise causing mischief.

Vacaville, California, Police Department
While conducting senior citizen wellness checks in 2006, members of Vacaville’s Volunteers in Police Service uncovered two scams targeting the elderly in the community. The senior citizen wellness checks also resulted in emergency service calls on behalf of a dozen seniors who were in danger or distress. Volunteers on patrol issued more than 3,700 citations, tagged 1,145 vehicles, and identified two stolen vehicles. Volunteers responded to three emergency callouts in 2006: they helped residents with cleanup and emergency relief efforts after a winter storm caused severe flooding; they conducted door-to-door checks on residents after power went out during a heat wave; and they stuffed and labeled 10,000 envelopes for a mass mailing to alert city residents in an area targeted by a serial rapist. One volunteer, while off duty, reported suspect activity that led to three arrests and the resolution of 15 auto burglary cases in Vacaville and several similar cases in neighboring jurisdictions. Sixty volunteers provided 14,441 hours of service in more than 20 separate job functions distributed across the agency’s five divisions within 14 sections. According to Vacaville’s calculations, the donated hours were worth nearly $400,000 to the city.

2008 application due: May 15, 2008
For more information about the Outstanding Achievement in Law Enforcement Volunteer Programs Award, visit the awards section of the IACP Web site,, or contact Carolyn Cockroft at the IACP, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2357; by phone at 1-800-THE-IACP, extension 206; or via e-mail at

IACP August Vollmer Excellence in Forensic Science Award

The IACP recognizes the significant impact of forensic science on the criminal justice system. The August Vollmer Excellence in Forensic Science Award was created in 2007 to honor the proactive, innovative use of forensic technologies by the law enforcement community.

August Vollmer (1876–1955), the “father of American policing,” pioneered many of the innovations that continue to define modern police work. While chief of police in Berkeley, California, Vollmer served as IACP president in 1921–1922. Vollmer promoted the use of new forensic technology, including fingerprinting, polygraph machines, and crime laboratories. He also contributed to the development of radio communication, improvement in crime analysis, and the creation of patrol districts based on crime data; in addition, he encouraged higher education and professionalism in policing.

Nomination categories for the first annual presentation of the IACP August Vollmer Excellence in Forensic Science Award are as follows:
• Current or Past Contribution to Forensic Science by Police Agency
• Innovation in Forensic Technology (individual or crime lab)
• Significant Investigative Value in a Major Crime
• Current or Past Contribution to Forensic Science by an Individual

National Forensic Academy
Current or Past Contribution to Forensic Science by Police Agency
The National Forensic Academy (NFA) is a nationally available training facility that provides accredited education in the theory and practice of forensic investigation by recognized experts in their respective fields. The NFA is an established forensic science entity that fosters research, provides training, and encourages the development of forensic technologies, improving the quality of the criminal justice system in the United States. Under the development of the University of Tennessee and the Knoxville Police Department, the National Forensic Academy began its first training session in September 2001. Drawing upon recent developments in forensic science, the NFA provides a unique program that brings detailed training in contemporary investigative techniques and skills to local law enforcement agencies across the country.

Broward County, Florida, Sheriff’s Regional Crime Laboratory
Innovation in Forensic Technology
The Broward County Sheriff’s Regional Crime Laboratory, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, created the Blood Stain Collection Kit with the goal of deploying this tool throughout its agency. The lab’s objective was to equip all deputy sheriffs with a kit that would facilitate the recovery of DNA-related evidence from property crime scenes. In January 2003, an initial 2,000 kits were distributed, and 899 individual deputy sheriffs were trained to collect blood and other body fluids from the scene of property crimes. As a result of these training sessions, 1,690 kits were deployed for use throughout Broward County. As of January 2007, 237 Blood Stain Collection Kits have been submitted to the crime laboratory for analysis, of which 193 contained viable DNA material.

Cecilia Doyle, Deb Depczynski, and Barb Wilson
Significant Investigative Value in a Major Crime
In 1993, seven employees of Brown’s Chicken and Pasta Restaurant were murdered in Palatine, Illinois. The offenders fled hours before the discovery of the victims, and there was little physical evidence and no witnesses. By 1997, newly developed short tandem repeat (STR) DNA technology provided a solid lead in the case. The new technology was used to analyze the remains of a chicken meal that had been served eight minutes after closing, around the time of the murders. Illinois State Police Crime laboratory analysts Cecilia Doyle, Deb Depczynski, and Barb Wilson (who lost her battle with ovarian cancer before receiving the award) worked on the case and confirmed results leading to the first solid lead in over four years. In 2002, through contact with a woman claiming to be a former girlfriend of one of the killers, a DNA swab was obtained from one of the suspects and another from a possible accomplice (who was a former employee of the restaurant), and a match was made to the DNA extracted from the chicken meal in 1997. On May 16, 2002, both individuals were arrested and gave confessions regarding the nine-year-old crime. In the end, early DNA technology and work done by Cecilia Doyle, Deb Depczynski, and Barb Wilson brought this case to a successful resolution.

Jerry Bruckheimer
Current or Past Contribution to Forensic Science by an Individual
Jerry Bruckheimer is a film and television producer who has dedicated much of his television production career to airing dramatic shows that highlight reality-based issues in criminal justice and forensic science, raising societal awareness of the importance of forensic science. Bruckheimer’s television shows, such as CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CSI: Miami, CSI: NY, and Cold Case have significantly influenced the television-viewing audience about the criminal justice system and forensic science. Bruckheimer’s shows have been credited for increasing interest in law enforcement careers, expanding the number of applicants to academic programs in criminal justice and forensic science, influencing policy, educating juries regarding forensic evidence such as DNA, and encouraging victims to come forward as they better understand how physical evidence can make a difference in prosecuting those who commit crimes.

2008 application due: March 21, 2008
For more information about the IACP August Vollmer Excellence in Forensic Science Award, visit the awards section of the IACP Web site,, or contact Aviva Kurash at the IACP, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2357; by phone at 1-800-THE-IACP, extension 809; or via e-mail at

IACP/ChoicePoint Award for Excellence in Criminal Investigations

The IACP/ChoicePoint Award for Excellence in Criminal Investigations provides recognition to a law enforcement agency, law enforcement unit, task force, or interagency task force for its exceptional innovation and excellence in the area of criminal investigations. The goal of the award is to recognize quality achievements in managing and conducting criminal investigations and to promote the sharing of information on successful programs.

First Place Award: Arizona Financial Task Force

Second Place Award: Royal Canadian Mounted Police

Third Place Award: Sacramento, California, Police Department

2008 application due: June 2, 2008
For more information about the IACP/ChoicePoint Award for Excellence in Criminal Investigations, visit the awards section of the IACP Web site,, or contact Phil Lynn at the IACP, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2357; by phone at 1-800-THE-IACP, extension 324; or via e-mail at

IACP Environmental Crimes Committee Chief Dave Cameron Award

The IACP Environmental Crimes Committee Chief Dave Cameron Award recognizes excellence in environmental crimes enforcement and education by law enforcement officers and their agencies. The award honors David Cameron, chief of police in Jackson, Wyoming, from 1992 until his untimely death in April 2001. Through his professionalism, dedication, and personality, Chief Cameron positively affected law enforcement worldwide while serving as chairman of the IACP Environmental Crimes Committee and as a member of the IACP Executive Committee from 1992 to 2001.

The award is presented to law enforcement agencies that work to enforce environmental crimes, educate the public, and safeguard law enforcement. Programs or initiatives must have been started no later than one year prior to submission for consideration.

Blue Ridge Environmental Task Force
In 2001, U.S. attorney John L. Brownlee established the Blue Ridge Environmental Task Force, whose mission is to protect the quality of Virginia’s natural resources. The task force also helps municipalities solve environmental problems and develops protocols and strategies to assist local leaders in dealing with environmental hazards. The effectiveness of the Blue Ridge Environmental Task Force is based on the quality of cooperation among state, local, and federal agencies. By sharing information and resources, agencies are very successful in stopping those who choose to violate environmental laws. As a result of their work, for example, the owner of a trailer park in Bedford, Virginia, was caught allowing the park’s sewage lagoon to discharge sewage into a branch of Sandy Creek, a tributary of the Roanoke River connected to Smith Mountain Lake. A federal jury convicted the park owner on April 28, 2005, for violations of the Clean Water Act.

Cases of environmental abuse in Virginia are investigated by the police departments of Roanoke, Bedford, Salem, and Radford; the EPA; agents, officers, and firefighters from the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality; the Virginia Department of Emergency Management; the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service; the Virginia Department of Forestry; the Roanoke Fire-EMS Service; and the Salem Fire and EMS Department. These agencies work to identify and investigate suspected violations of environmental laws. By combining their efforts, the agencies involved in the task force maximize their resources without duplicating their work.

2008 application due: May 1, 2008
For more information about the IACP Environmental Crimes Committee Chief Dave Cameron Award, visit the awards section of the IACP Web site,, or contact Clarence Bell at the IACP, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314-2357; by phone at 1-800-THE-IACP, extension 215; or via e-mail at ¦

Click here to view this article with photos of award winners.

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From The Police Chief, vol. 75, no. 1, January 2008. Copyright held by the International Association of Chiefs of Police, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314 USA.

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