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ASU Police Department awards honor officers, civilians

April 07, 2010

Two young girls who were playing near the Polytechnic campus took note of a couple of boys who had just caused $1,500 damage to a campus building by spraying fire extinguishers inside. When an officer approached the girls to ask if they saw anything suspicious, they were able to provide a detailed description of the boys, leading to their apprehension.

“These two young girls were not afraid to help the police,” said Jay Spradling, ASU Police Department assistant chief.

The duo was honored with citizen meritorious awards Monday evening during the ASU Police Department’s Second Annual Awards Ceremony. They were among a host of honorees who gathered to receive special commendations from the department.

Morgan Olsen, ASU executive vice president, treasurer and chief financial officer, expressed his gratitude to the ASU Police Department that helps ensure that the learning environment at the university is safe and secure.

“Each year our partnership strengthens with the community," said ASU Police Chief John Pickens. "I appreciate all that you do.”  He thanked those in the community for their commitment to public safety. 

A portion of that work was exhibited through the efforts of Adam Pagano and Marco McKay who witnessed a suspect trying to steal bikes. Because they contacted police and provided a good description of the subject, they thwarted the thief’s efforts. Both were awarded citizen meritorious awards.

“They saved three separate victims from losing part or all of their bikes,” Spradling said.

Corporal Patrick Lindbergh, who passed away earlier this year after a short illness, was given the sworn employee of the year award. Nominated for the award before his untimely death, Lindbergh was honored for his work in special events at commencement when President Barack Obama came to speak. He also coordinated public safety at football games, particularly on Homecoming night, which also happened to be Halloween and the night of other events on campus where officers were needed. Lindbergh reviewed personnel charts, drawing from ASU resources where he could and he worked with outside agencies to staff the game.

“He was an excellent police officer,” Spradling said.

ASU Assistant Police Chief Allen Clark was a double award winner. He received the Chief’s Citation for his work on commencement when President Barack Obama came to speak. Clark oversaw and organized meetings among Valley law enforcement agencies and ensured that the public safety aspect of the event complied with National Incident Management System standards. Clark also earned a citation for 20 years of service with the department.

Other awards included:

• Craig Trimble of ASU’s University Technology Office garnered a citizen meritorious citation for his work on several public safety projects for the ASU Police Department including call-box issues, 911 upgrades and moving the department’s radio system to Stauffer Hall.

• Cliff Jones, recently retired as chief of the Tempe Fire Department after nearly 40 years, was awarded a citizen meritorious citation for his “constant and proven: leadership and support of ASU.

• Sgt. Dan Macias and Sgt. Michele Rourke were honored as supervisors of the year. Macias took on additional responsibilities during 2009 when he transferred to the Downtown Phoenix campus and supervised two overnight squads with 17 employees answering to him. He was cited for always being accessible for his staff as well as serving as a mentor. Rourke was asked to supervise administrative tasks, training and investigations. She also aided in planning and working the event when President Obama spoke at commencement.

• A team award was given to the ASU Police Department’s Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) program that helped expand the program to include areas such as victim’s assistance, records and front lobby help. Also earning a team award was the 2009 Holiday Food and Toy Drive team that helped ensure that 14 families and 24 additional needy children were able to enjoy the holidays with enough food to eat and/or presents.

• The Civilian Employee of the Year award went to Police Aide Cory Polak who fostered an atmosphere of teamwork at the Downtown Phoenix campus and serves as a mentor to others as a former police officer who is now retired from the Mesa Police Department.

• Awards were also given for 5, 10, 15 and 20 years of service. Shooting awards were presented in expert and master categories.