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  For Immediate Release: February 19, 2016
Contact: Lt. Craig Cvetan or Sgt. Vincent Shirey (614) 752-2792

Patrol Announces 2015 Leadership Awards

COLUMBUS – The Ohio State Highway Patrol announced the winners of their 2015 Leadership Awards today. Top honors include:

Ohio State Highway Patrol Trooper of the YearTpr. Evan M. Slates, of the Bowling Green Post, was selected from the nine District Troopers of the Year. Tpr. Slates has lead the Bowling Green Post and District One in OVI arrests on an annual basis. In 2015, he led the entire state with 217 OVI arrests. During the summer holiday reporting period, Tpr. Slates consistently arrested double-digit OVI offenders. As committed as Tpr. Slates is to the Division’s goals associated with OVI enforcement, he does not hesitate to assist his fellow troopers with crashes, traffic stops, or other situations that arise. Tpr. Slates is an extremely team oriented individual who always puts his co-workers first. The self-discipline and experience he gained from the Marine Corps are evident in his commitment to achieving the Division’s mission. Tpr. Slates’ attention to detail and self-initiative reflect in all of his crash investigations. He routinely “looks beyond the license plate” on traffic stops and strives to contribute to a safer Ohio. He is very active in his church and volunteers his time as an usher to help serve communion and collect the offerings. He is a youth leader at his church and is involved in a mentoring program for younger church members. Tpr. Slates joined the Patrol in October 2010 as a member of the 150th Academy Class.  He earned his commission in April of the following year, and was assigned to the Bowling Green Post. He earned the Criminal Patrol Award in 2013 and 2014. He was selected as Post Trooper of the Year in 2013, 2014, and 2015. He was selected as District Trooper of the Year in 2013 and 2015.

Ohio State Highway Patrol Dispatcher of the Year – Dispatcher Aimee M. Young, of the Dayton Dispatch Center was selected from the nine District Dispatchers of the Year. Disp. Young joined the Patrol in July 2004 as a Dispatcher assigned to the Dayton Dispatch Center, where she has been assigned throughout her career. She was selected as Post Dispatcher of the Year in 2011 and 2015.

Blue Max Award (Patrol’s top auto larceny enforcer) – Tpr. Andrew T. Dunn, of the Georgetown Post, was honored with the Blue Max Award for recovering the most stolen vehicles. In 2015, he recovered 11 stolen vehicles, valued at $18,562, resulting in the apprehension of 13 suspects. Tpr. Dunn joined the Patrol in September 2011 as a member of the 151st Academy Class.  He earned his commission in February of the following year, and is assigned to the Georgetown Post. In 2015, he was selected as District Trooper of Year, earned the Criminal Patrol Award and earned the Ace Award for excellence in auto larceny enforcement.

Robert M. Chiaramonte Humanitarian AwardLt. Christopher J. Kinn has served the public in the nation of Haiti for the last several years. Lt. Kinn has volunteered countless hours of his own time traveling to Haiti in order to help this third world nation. He has specifically volunteered his time by laboring in the extreme high temperature and high humidity rebuilding schools. Lt. Kinn has also donated much of his own money and personal items to the children of Haiti in order for them to have basic life necessities, such as food and water.

Lt. Kinn joined the Patrol in September 2000 as a member of the 136th Academy Class. He earned his commission in March of the following and was assigned to the Findlay Post, where he was selected as Post Trooper of the Year 2005. In 2008, he was promoted to the rank of sergeant and remained at the Findlay Post to serve as an assistant post commander. In 2010, he transferred to the Findlay District Headquarters. In 2013, he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant and transferred to the Crash Reconstruction Unit to serve as commander.

Colonel Thomas W. Rice Leadership Award – Sgt. David S. Garber, of the Canton Post, was honored with the Colonel Thomas W. Rice Leadership Award, which is presented to one sworn supervisory officer annually for outstanding leadership. The award is sponsored by the Ohio State Highway Patrol Retirees’ Association and is in honor of former Patrol Superintendent Thomas W. Rice.

Sgt. Garber joined the Patrol in September 2000 as a member of the 136th Academy Class. He earned his commission in March of the following year, and was assigned to the Mt. Gilead Post. He earned the Criminal Patrol Award in 2002 and 2015. He earned the Ace Award for excellence in auto larceny enforcement in 2002. In 2005, he transferred to the Canton Post. In 2009, he was promoted to the rank of sergeant and transferred to the Marietta Post to serve as an assistant post commander. In 2010, he transferred to the Mansfield Post. In 2011, he returned to his most recent assignment at the Canton Post.

Motor Carrier Enforcement Inspector of the Year – Motor Carrier Enforcement Inspector Thomas E. Huff, of the Findlay District Commercial Enforcement Unit, was selected as Motor Carrier Enforcement Inspector of the Year. MCEI Huff began his career with the Patrol in August 2008 as a Dispatcher assigned to the Wapakoneta Post. As a Dispatcher, he has also served at the Van Wert and Piqua Dispatch Centers. In 2011, he was selected as Piqua Post and District Dispatcher of the Year. In 2012, he was promoted to a Stationary Load Limit Inspector and transferred to the Findlay District Commercial Enforcement Unit. In 2014, he was promoted to a Motor Carrier Enforcement Inspector and remained at Findlay District Commercial Enforcement Unit.

Electronic Technician Award – Electronic Technician 3 William J. Hummel, Warren District Headquarters, was selected as Electronic Technician of the Year. An Electronic Technician 3 supports the Division by testing, maintaining, aligning, and programming many types of communications equipment.  ET 3’s also are responsible for other equipment such as RADARs, TASERs and OSHP marked vehicles. Electronic Technician 3 Hummel joined the Patrol in January 1997 as an Electronic Technician 2 assigned to the Warren District Headquarters. In 2011, he was promoted to an Electronic Technician 3 and remained at Warren District Headquarters. He was selected as Electronic Technician of the Year in 2012.

Ohio Trooper Recognition Award – Tpr. James E. Sharp, Polygraph Unit, was selected from 10 regional recipients. The Trooper Recognition Award recognizes excellence among troopers who are assigned to specialty positions. He joined the Patrol in February 1999 as a member of the 133rd Academy Class. He earned his commission in July of that year and was assigned to the Marysville Post. In 2006, he transferred to the Aviation Unit to serve as a pilot. In 2008, he returned to the Marysville Post. In 2009, he transferred to his most recent assignment in the Polygraph Unit.

Employee Recognition Award – Public Safety Intelligence Analyst Katelyn M. Mason, Intelligence Unit, received the award presented annually to recognize excellence by a civilian employee. She began her state career in December 2013 as a Public Safety Intelligence Analyst and has been assigned to the Intelligence Unit throughout her career.

Ohio Investigative Unit State Agent of the Year – Daniel J. Mone, Cleveland District Office, was selected as State Agent of the Year. Agent Mone joined the Ohio Investigative Unit in December 2013 and is assigned to the Cleveland District Office.

Police Officer of the Year – Police Officer William H. Baron, Ohio Expo Center, was selected as Police Officer of the Year. Officer Baron joined the Patrol in August 2011 and was assigned to the Ohio State House. In 2012, he transferred to the Ohio Expo Center. In 2013, he received the Safe Driving ribbon.

Note to Editors: Below are District honors for: District Trooper of the Year, District Dispatcher of the Year, District Trooper Recognition and District Employee Recognition. For photographs of award winners, e-mail wwwOHP@dps.ohio.gov with requests.

Findlay District – Tpr. Evan M. Slates , Bowling Green Post; Dispatcher Denise S. Blue, Findlay Dispatch Center; Tpr. Christopher L. Ellison, Findlay District Investigations; Beth Stewart Bullinger (Administrative Professional 1), Van Wert Post.
Bucyrus District – Tpr. Jason R. Beck, Mansfield Post; Dispatcher Dorothy A. Ettel, Bucyrus Dispatch Center; Tpr. Matthew A. Ruth, Bucyrus Criminal Patrol; Brian J. Bender (Maintenance Repair Worker 2), Marion Post.
Cleveland District – Tpr. John R. Nemastil, Canton Post; Dispatcher Brittney N. Horning, Cleveland Dispatch Center; Tpr. Jeffrey A. Kaess, Cleveland District Investigations; Elizabeth A. Hyer (Administrative Professional 1), Ashland Post.
Warren District – Tpr. David M Brown, Canfield Post; Dispatcher Nicholas W. Johnson, Warren Dispatch Center; Tpr. Michael W. Gurlea, Warren District Investigations; Valerie J. Maffitt (Administrative Professional 1), Warren Post.
Piqua District – Tpr. John D. McLeod, Springfield Post; Dispatcher Aimee M. Young, Dayton Dispatch Center; Tpr. Jason A. Barhorst, Piqua Criminal Patrol; Dawn M. Heppard (Administrative Professional 1), Wapakoneta Post.
Columbus District – Tpr. Ryan M. May, Delaware Post; Dispatcher Ernest M. King, Lancaster Dispatch Center; Tpr. John D. Chaney, Columbus District Investigations; Michelle L. Himes   (Administrative Professional 1), Delaware Post.
Cambridge District – Tpr. Tyler P. McKee, Cambridge Post; Dispatcher David M. Spratt, Cambridge Dispatch Center; Tpr. Trenas M. Weaver, Cambridge District Investigations; Lorie J. Wozniak (Administrative Professional 1), New  Philadelphia.
Wilmington District – Tpr. Matthew R. Keener, Lebanon Post; Dispatcher Amy J. McCleese, Lebanon  Dispatch Center; Tpr. Jennifer J. Soderquist, Wilmington District Headquarters; Richard P. Spence (Maintenance Repair Worker 2), Wilmington District Headquarters.
Jackson District – Tpr. Joshua C. Craft, Ironton Post; Dispatcher Brandi D. Trelka, Jackson District Headquarters; Tpr. Tytus A. Gilliland, Jackson District Headquarters; Lisa L. Leach (Infrastructure Specialist 2), Jackson District Headquarters.
GHQ – Dispatcher of the Year: Dispatcher Carrie M. Breech, Columbus Communications Center; District Trooper Recognition: Tpr. James E. Sharp, Polygraph; Katelyn M. Mason (Public Safety Intelligence Analyst), Intelligence Unit; Jessica L. Heiselman (Administrative Professional 1), Expo Center; Melinda S. Harrison (Program Administrator 1), Office of Criminal Investigations.

Auxiliary Awards
The following awards are for the Patrol’s Auxiliary members who are an all-volunteer force that provides assistance to troopers.

William J. Duffy Award of Excellence – Williams J. Sanford
This award requires a minimum of 300 volunteer hours per year over three consecutive years.
Auxiliary Lieutenant Williams J. Sanford joined the Ohio State Highway Patrol Auxiliary in 2006 and is assigned to the Granville Post. He has also served as an auxiliary sergeant and auxiliary captain. Over the last three years, he has volunteered an average of 400 hours per year which includes riding on patrol, working at sobriety checkpoints and assisting at special details.
In addition to volunteering with the Patrol, Auxiliary Lieutenant Sanford works as a marketing director.

State Auxiliary Officer of the Year- David F. Pillion
Auxiliary Staff Lieutenant joined the Ohio State Highway Patrol Auxiliary in 1993 and was assigned to the Delaware Post. In 2015, Auxiliary Staff Lieutenant Pillion volunteered 1,060 hours of time in assisting with Patrol duties. This time included riding on patrol, assisting at the Ohio State Fair, Ohio State University football game details, sobriety checkpoints, Shield details and working at the Academy store.

Auxiliary Staff Lieutenant Pillion retired from the Ohio Attorney General Office.


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