At a recognition awards event this past Saturday Constable Randy Wood, Community Officer for North Dartmouth, was named Police Officer of the Year for 2011, an announcement that brought on a thunderous cheer from the crowd and a standing ovation. He could have just as easily been named social worker, community builder, friend or mentor of the year. Randy’s passion for his job and compassion for people is obvious to all who have the pleasure of meeting him. What strikes me the most about Randy is his humility. When I notified him of his win he reluctantly thanked me but suggested that there are far more deserving officers than him. Randy doesn’t want recognition as he truly believes he’s just doing his job and is lucky to have the opportunity to serve the community.
In response to a newspaper story about his win that someone posted on Facebook, Randy thanked all who supported him and more than 30 people including fellow officers, community members and friends posted glowing comments about his work and character. Without a doubt, we’re lucky to have Randy in our community.
Other awards were presented for Meritorious Service, Civilian Employee of the Year, Community Contribution and Investigator of the Year. I had the pleasure of notifying all the winners and I was met with humble surprise. For the most part, all the winners suggested names of others whom they felt should receive the award before them. These winners help shatter the perception of the police environment being filled with ‘A’ type personalities and big egos. It’s actually filled with a lot of great, caring people.
The officers and civilians receiving awards Saturday weren’t the only winners; we’re all winners for having such dedicated, caring people working in our community. I, for one, am proud to have the opportunity to work with them. You can see more information on the winners at http://www.halifax.ca/Police/PressReleases/2012/02%20February/Halifax-Regional-Police-Names-Police-Officer-of-the-Year.html.
Last year also saw twelve police officers and two civilians retire from Halifax Regional Police, taking with them a whopping 456 years of combined experience! Their contribution to our community will be missed and I wish them well in this new chapter in their lives.
Please join me in congratulating all the 2011 award winners and retirees.