On Friday, February 21, 2020, the Prescott Police Department proudly awarded its 2019 employee awards to several members of the Department. The ceremony held at the Goods from the Garden Event Center recognized the following individuals for their achievement, professionalism, and dedication to the Prescott Police Department Mission and Values:
Volunteer of the Year: Presented to Citizen on Patrol Volunteer Bert Austin and Citizen On Patrol Volunteer Kathleen Ostrander for selflessly dedicating themselves to the COP Program and the Prescott Police Department by spending hundreds of hours volunteering and filling the essential roles of the COP’s. In fact, Ms. Ostrander logged over 1600 hours last year and assists the Department with traffic control at crashes, disabled vehicles in the roadway and abandoned vehicles. Mr. Austin is a Sergeant for our COP group and does an excellent job managing the day to day operations of this very important volunteer group.
Rookie of the Year: Presented to Officer Gahr for displaying the ideals and characteristics essential to a Prescott Police Officer and embracing our values of Integrity, Courage, Accountability, Respect, and Excellence. Officer Gahr demonstrated a strong work ethic and compassion for those in the community he interacts with. He exhibits a willingness to go above and beyond each call he receives in order to make sure the person is satisfied with the level of service they receive. He is a great team player and is always eager to help his fellow officers.
Community Service Award: Presented to Officer Reynolds in recognition of going above and beyond to serve the community by way of her work. Over the course of this past year, Officer Reynolds and her K9 partner Benny have gone out of their way to steal the show at many community events such as National Night Out, Shop with a Cop, Equifest, Pink Patch fundraisers, and countless demonstrations from schools to churches and of course our very own citizen academies.
Civilian Employee of the Year: Presented to Animal Control Officer Mr. Joe Driskill chosen as the winner of this award because he has continually demonstrated compassion and dedication for his work that is matched by few. He often goes above and beyond in providing quality service to those in the community he serves and helps resolve their concerns. He regularly works late to handle animal control issues to lessen the burden of patrol officers working the streets.
Communication Specialist of the Year: Presented to Ms. Jennifer Bass who was chosen for this award as she consistently goes above and beyond what is required, year after year. Many times with staffing issues at a critical level, she willingly helps to cover shifts. As a CPR instructor, Jennifer teaches CPR to our dispatchers several times a year. Within dispatch, Jennifer is an excellent trainer and takes on any new trainees when asked. She is thorough in her training and will do anything she can to help her trainees succeed. She is always willing to help and mentor anyone when needed.
Sworn Police Officer of the Year: Awarded to Officer Parker Mark who has greatly contributed to the success of this department. He is the department’s phlebotomy and DRE coordinator as well as the department’s radar and laser instructor. He ensures officers stay current with their training in these specialties as well as has trained all certified employees on the use of the radar and laser systems for the last several years. Ofc. Parker is one of the hardest working officers of the department and the list of projects he has helped implement is endless. He spearheaded the TraCS project which has saved countless hours inputting data for the records section, limiting mistakes by officers, and creating a seamless integration with the courts and ADOT. He has assisted with the TriTech RMS and CAD project. Ofc. Parker spent hundreds of hours with IT, officers, and representatives from other agencies building this program to fit everyone’s needs.
Supervisor of the Year: Presented to Sergeant Novak as he has proven himself a fair and objective leader toward the patrolmen and women in which he leads. Sgt. Novak has a passion for this job that is contagious. He allows his officers to be proactive and handle their calls accordingly, without unsolicited input from him, showing the trust he has in his officers. He looks after the officers he supervises and for the best interest of the department. In his supervisory role, he has been seen as an excellent resource for advice. He is not above using his own experiences to better teach and protect his officers.
Lifesaving Award: Awarded to Detective Jennison and Detective Brazell for their roles in locating a missing hiker on the Peavine Trail on September 18, 2019. Using investigative tools and technology they were able to pinpoint the exact location of the missing hiker and led rescue crews to his location where he was found alive after 3 days on his own. He was in serious medical condition and was immediately airlifted from the scene by helicopter to a Valley hospital where he was reunited with many family members. Based on his injuries, had he not been located at the time he was, he would have most likely died at the location he was found. Detectives Brazell and Jennison’s demonstration of teamwork with the use of this new technology made the successful recovery of the missing hiker possible
Medal of Merit: Awarded to Officer Doty for his role in stopping what could have been a large scale shooting event. On September 5, 2019, at 11:00 AM, Officer Doty responded to a call of a suspicious male at the Shell station on Iron Springs Road. Upon his arrival, Officer Doty observed the male in question inside the Shell store mart with all three store employees huddled together behind the counter. Officer Doty contacted the subject and requested to speak with him. The subject instead attempted to walk out of the store. As Officer Doty stopped him from exiting the store, he noticed the handle of a pistol in his right front pocket. Officer Doty quickly removed the firearm and placed the subject in handcuffs. The subject was escorted out of the store and asked to sit while Officer Doty conducted his investigation. The investigation revealed that the suspect had strategically placed several loaded rifles, ammo and additional supplies throughout the parking lot of a very busy location and adjacent to a very busy intersection. The decisive actions of Officer Doty prevented the tragedy from occurring.
Police Chief’s Recognition of Excellence: Awarded to Mrs. Joyce Anderson, Ms. Laura Willson, Mrs. Julie Wilson, Mr. Jesse Horton, Officer Parker and Officer Bardon for their extraordinary work on the implementation of a new computer-aided dispatch system and a new records management system. Each of them put in hundreds, if not thousands, of hours into this project. Their dedication and commitment have proven to be the difference in the success of the implementation of new CAD and RMS systems with minimal interruptions to our daily calls for service. Their collective and unique individual skills, knowledge, and abilities have been tested time and again to the fullest extent possible during the course of this lengthy and complicated project. They all faced many frustrations and roadblocks during the process, but continued to persevere, working as a team to see the project through to its final stages. Without this group of people, we no doubt would have seen significant failures and an inability to continue our day-to-day operations as needed.
Awards were also presented to Lead Police Officer Willis, and Sergeant Gerlach, for excellence in firearms proficiency. Sergeant Gerlach also received the Department’s Physical Fitness award for scoring a perfect 100% on his last evaluation.
The Prescott Police Department would like to thank members of the Prescott Valley Police Department for helping to provide street coverage so that on-duty members of the Prescott Police Department could attend this ceremony.