15 Honored at Third Annual DPS Awards Ceremony
The Department of Public Safety honored 12 of its employees, along with three members of the University community at the third annual DPS Awards Ceremony, held at Drumlins on Wednesday, April 28th. The awards honored the exceptional achievements of DPS staff members throughout the 2009 calendar year. Their outstanding accomplishments continue to contribute to the safety and security of the Syracuse University community.
The award recipients were:
Gregory P. MacDonald, an SU student, received recognition for recognizing and confronting a suspect in Dellplain Hall, who had repeatedly gained entrance to the hall and engaged in voyeurism. With the help of fellow students, MacDonald escorted the suspect to authorities.
Raymond Kopp and Lee Badman, both members of the University’s Information Technology and Services department were recognized for their help in solving a number of burglaries and larcenies by tracking computer addresses on the University network.
Public Safety Residential Receptionist Joseph O’Connor was presented with the inaugural Major Grant Williams Community Policing Award. The award commemorates the dedication and commitment to service exemplified by the late Major Williams in his over four decades of service to the Department of Public Safety and to the University. O’Connor was honored for his consistently excellent performance as a member of the residential security program, and his willingness to make the program better in any manner possible.
The Director’s Distinguished Award was given to three members of the department for their continuing commitment to going above and beyond their required duties. DPS Office Manager Nicole Cooter, Lieutenant Vernon Thompson, and Captain John Sardino were presented with this award – Cooter for her incredible reliability and dedication to the implementation of a new scheduling system, Thompson for leading an investigation into the sale of marijuana on campus and his leadership role in implementing a security training program on campus, and Sardino for his leadership in coordinating the security for Vice President Joseph Biden’s visit to campus in September.
Public Safety Officers Edward Babcock and Paul Jenkins received the Director’s Meritorious Service Award, along with Communications Specialist Diane Jensen for their collective efforts during the investigation of a robbery and the subsequent recovery of the stolen property.
Also receiving the Meritorious Service Award were Sergeant Sean Corcoran and Peace Officer Todd Windsor, for assisting the Syracuse Police Department by running down and subduing a suspect with a lengthy arrest record as he attempted to flee from a traffic stop.
The Vice Presidents’ Award is presented to an officer who performs a series of acts of exceptional achievement to the department and the University. This year, Peace Officer Matthew Marsh and Assistant Chief Michael Rathbun were honored with the award. Marsh was recognized for his performance throughout the 2009 calendar year, and specifically for his actions that led to an arrest of a suspect for criminal possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment, and in a separate incident, affecting the arrest of a suspect for criminal possession of a weapon and resisting arrest.
Rathbun was singled out for his actions on two separate occasions: for subduing and arresting a suspect for criminal possession of a weapon, burglary in the second degree, and resisting arrest. On a separate occasion, he directed DPS and SPD units to two robbery suspects who were attempting to flee the scene of the crime by boarding a CENTRO bus.
The final award of the night was the Director’s Award for Heroism, which was presented to Peace Officer Christopher Reidy. Officer Reidy was honored for his quick actions following an assault at the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity. He immediately called the assault out over the radio, and began a foot pursuit of the suspect, eventually apprehending him at gunpoint. During the investigation, he was able to direct officers to the weapon used in the assault, which the suspect had discarded during the pursuit.
Each award recipient significantly impacted the collective efforts of the Department of Public Safety, and it is due to their efforts that the reputation of DPS as a service provider and professional law enforcement agency has continued to flourish.