FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Steve Tompkins
CHOICE PROGRAM OFFICERS HONORED AT CORRECTION OFFICER OF THE YEAR CEREMONY
On Tuesday, June 26, officers in the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department Choice Program were honored with the Community Service Group Award at the 10th Annual Correction Officer of the Year ceremony.
Presented at the State House by Secretary of the Executive Office of Public Safety Kevin Burke, along with Suffolk County Sheriff Andrea J. Cabral, and Lieutenant Governor Tim Murray, members of the Department were joined by attending sheriffs from surrounding counties throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as well as fellow corrections officers, family, and friends.
“There is a sacrifice given day in and day out by Corrections Officers,” said Lt. Governor Murray. “Each and every year we recognize the efforts of those who perform one of the toughest forms of public service. Many don’t understand them fully. But, Corrections Officers perform in a difficult and dangerous profession and they are every bit as crucial as the other pieces of law enforcement within our justice system.”
Following the ceremony, Sheriff Cabral said, “It is indeed an honor to have our Choice Officers recognized for their dedication to community service and for their efforts to provide the youth of Suffolk County with positive examples. This award is a testament to the hard work and sacrifice given by the men and women of the Department.”
The Choice Program, in a statement read by Secretary Burke, was described as “an effort to stem the tide of rising violence. These officers volunteer their free time to address students in Boston area schools about making smart choices in their lives. The program encourages children, grades 5–9, to respect themselves and others while preparing for their futures. To date, the choice program has visited more than 60 schools within Suffolk County.”
Burke went on to say of the proceedings, “These awards provide an opportunity to recognize the resourcefulness and courage of the men and women in corrections and to thank them for their service.”
Sheriff Cabral’s Chief of Staff Anne Powers and Superintendent of the House of Corrections Gerard Horgan offered similar sentiments.
“We are very proud of the men and women of our department,” said Chief of Staff Anne Powers. “They volunteer to be a part of the Choice Program and give up their time to some of the children in Suffolk County. Outreach is an important part of the work that we do and this award is really a great reflection of their efforts.”
“This is a special occasion and I think it’s great that these officers are being honored for their efforts to make our neighborhoods better places,” said Superintendent Horgan. “Too often, they’re the unsung heroes, but an event like this one helps to recognize them for their work.”
As two members of the group of honorees, Deputy Jason Campbell and Deputy Johnny Igoe appeared humbled by the moment.
“I feel really good about it,” said Deputy Campbell. “This is a very prestigious award and I feel like I’m in the company of some great officers. The Choice Program is very special to us. It’s our opportunity to give back to the community.”
“It’s great to be honored at the State House,” added Deputy Igoe. “This is a very meaningful and special honor to be recognized for our work with the kids in the different areas. Being honored by the Lt. Governor is a big thing and to have Sheriff Cabral presenting the award is great. This is a blessing and I’m glad to have my family here today to see it.”
The officers honored with the Community Service Group Award were: Assistant Deputy Superintendent Yolanda Smith; Deputy James Cochrane; Deputy John Amate; Deputy Anthony Andrews; Deputy Abiezer Ayuso; Deputy Calvin Brinson; Deputy Jason Campbell; Deputy Juan Diaz; Deputy John Igoe; Deputy William Jackson; Deputy Julio Pena; Deputy Richard Stangle; Corporal Thomas DeRosa; Officer Tracey Daras; Officer Kenneth Joyner; Officer Deniqua Lopes; Officer Elaine Morbi; and Officer LeTeya Thomas.