Lois Frankel, Paul de la Peña-Franceschi, Lisa Gables, Karen Wagener, and Pamela D. Delaney
This is the last in a special series of columns authored by members of the IACP Police Foundations Section. This article examines just a few of the accomplishments enjoyed by police foundations across the United States.
Washington DC Police Foundation
By Lois Frankel, Executive Director, Washington DC Police Foundation
he end of 2008 was a scary time for fledgling police foundations. Endowed foundations were hit hard, and many businesses, unsure of their own futures, began to reassess discretionary giving. At the same time, the needs of police departments were growing, even as their budgets and personnel shrank.
In response to the scarcity of funds, the Washington DC Police Foundation decided to look beyond what it could provide to the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) financially and explore a variety of in-kind gifts and services. In 2009, the foundation gave nearly $300,000 worth of pro bono services from a public relations firm to the MPD to develop a strategic plan for communications. This plan bolstered other efforts to build trust throughout the community so that residents would provide tips and serve as witnesses to assist the agency in closing cases fast. This effort played a part in driving the homicide rate to its lowest level since 1966 and the closure rate up to 76.4 percent.
In addition to the public relations assistance, the Washington DC Police Foundation was able to secure donations of gently used furniture and six donated bank safes for a total donation value of $168,000. The district stations benefited from the office setups, and MPD staff were delighted that they had additional, secure storage for evidence.
El Paso, Texas, Police Foundation
By Paul de la Peña-Franceschi, Executive Director, El Paso, Texas, Police Foundation
he El Paso, Texas, Police Foundation worked in cooperation with the El Paso, Texas, Police Department Grants Division to craft a grant request to the U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company (a division of Altria), a private partner of the foundation. As a result of the successful grant, the foundation received a 2009 Polaris Ranger 6-by-6 all-terrain utility vehicle, valued at $15,000, to be used by the El Paso Police Department.
The vehicle will be utilized by the Combined Search and Rescue Team (ComSAR) and the Special Operations Section of the El Paso Police Department. The ComSAR Team is a City of El Paso–funded interagency team comprised of 10 police officer/medics and 30 firefighter/medics who supply specialized assistance, paramedic-level medical care, and retrieval to citizens lost, injured, or deceased in remote wilderness settings in or around El Paso.
The team’s objective is to protect human life in the safest and most effective and efficient way, and the vehicle will be directly utilized to meet this goal and the growing needs of the El Paso Police Department and the citizens it serves.
Fairfax County, Virginia, Law Enforcement Foundation
By Lisa Gables, Vice President and Treasurer, Fairfax County, Virginia, Law Enforcement Foundation
n June 2008, Lieutenant Dan Janicky from the Franconia District Station of the Fairfax County, Virginia, Police Department began discussing a community outreach initiative with local businesses. Discussions led to an agreement to create a planned soccer tournament targeted to reach children in at-risk district neighborhoods. The Fairfax County Law Enforcement Foundation became a proud sponsor of this event, along with many other local businesses and county agencies.
The initial goal was to have four teams participate, but, thanks to the efforts of the local Franconia District Community Liaison Officer Lieutenant Janicky and Elmer Arias, a local community organizer, the tournament had 10 teams and more than 100 kids participating.
In this largely Hispanic community, Lieutenant Janicky commented, “We’ve traditionally had a hard time establishing trust.”
These outreach efforts have definitely paid off. United for Sport, as the program is now called, was beneficial for the community as well as the Fairfax County Police Department. As Franconia police officers were able to mingle with the crowd during the tournament, they were able to pass out brochures to parents on issues like gang prevention, childhood obesity, and drug awareness.
The event fostered a trusting relationship between members of law enforcement and the community, creating a more peaceful environment with less crime.
The Fairfax County Law Enforcement Foundation is proud to sponsor programs like United for Sport that lead to better relationships between the Fairfax County Police Department and those it serves.
Los Angeles, California, Police Foundation
By Karen Wagener, President (Retired), Los Angeles, California, Police Foundation
os Angeles, California, Police Department (LAPD) Chief William J. Bratton had one legacy project he wanted for the department: to build a memorial to fallen officers on the grounds of the new police administration building. Capital projects are not in the funding guidelines of the Los Angeles Police Foundation, but the board of directors agreed that this project would be important to the department, the city, and the chief.
The project engaged a large, diverse group of people, beginning with a board member obtaining pro bono services from a prominent architectural firm. LAPD senior command staff was involved in the visionary design phase, and after several meetings, the architects submitted a stunning concept of a wall with brass plates, including plates with the names, ranks, and end of watch for the 202 LAPD officers killed in the line of duty.
Even with donated architectural services and some donated construction services from the contractor of the new police headquarters, the project still required $750,000. The money was raised from corporate donors and from individuals, many on the foundation’s board of directors. Their names are engraved in marble at the foot of the memorial, a timeless recognition of their generosity.
The dedication ceremony of the memorial was very emotional, with many family members and friends of the honored, deceased officers present. White roses were placed by the names of those officers, and visitors still come bearing flowers.
The project was completed on schedule and under budget. Chief Bratton told the foundation that the memorial is a fitting salute to the men and women who gave their lives in service and that it is indeed the tangible legacy he envisioned for his term as chief.
New York City, New York, Police Foundation
By Pamela D. Delaney, President (Retired), New York City, New York, Police Foundation
he New York City, New York, Police Foundation’s “It’s Not a Cop, It’s a Con” program was designed to tackle the persistent, misleading, and often threatening telephone solicitations by commercial fund-raising firms on behalf of law enforcement causes—legitimate and otherwise. The program was a cooperative effort of the New York City Police Foundation (NYCPF), the New York State Charities Bureau, the Better Business Bureau, and the New York Police Department (NYPD).
The message was clear: members of the NYPD and its unions never call the public for donations, and calls from anyone representing themselves as an officer or a representative of a union, fraternal organization, unit, or program of the police department is an attempt to scam.
Using billboards, flyers, and public service ad space, the advertisements offer complaint-line information and advice for responding to all telephone solicitations. The intent was to warn the public of the scam but not discourage its generosity to worthy causes.
As the public became more aware of the problem, the complaint lines became more active with noticeable spikes in calls in May (law enforcement month) and November (seasonable giving). Today, the annual fall mailing to donors and potential donors includes the “It’s Not a Cop” flyer. This approach continues to deliver the message of the warning against fraudulent fund-raising and also provides a legitimate vehicle for donations to the NYPD. ■
|The IACP Foundation is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization established to solicit, receive, administer, and expend funds for law enforcement–related charitable and educational purposes. Donations may be tax deductible; please check with your personal tax adviser. The foundation’s federal tax ID number is 54-1576762.|
Please cite as:
Lois Frankel, Paul de la Peña-Franceschi, Lisa Gables, Karen Wagener, and Pamela D. Delaney, "IACP Foundation: Police Foundation Success Stories," The Police Chief 77 (June 2010): 10–11,
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/CPIM0610/#/10 (insert access date).