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The Paris Police Department held their annual Christmas and awards banquet at the Lamar Avenue Church of Christ, where five awards were presented to police department employees to recognize their superior work for the department.
Hosted by the Paris Police Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association, officers, employees, retirees and their guests all enjoyed fellowship and a meal during the event.
“The awards are quite meaningful to the recipients, as they are nominated and voted on by all personnel of the department,” Police Chief Bob Hundley said.
Five awards are presented during the event — Top Gun Marksmanship, Rookie Officer of the Year, Officer of the Year, Civilian Employee of the Year and Citizens Police Academy Volunteer of the Year.
“This year’s presentation of the awards was a little different than in the past,” the chief said. “The officers who were to be honored were not able to attend, as they were all on the scene of an armed barricaded suspect.”
Each recipient received an award plaque and a gift from the Alumni Association.
Kathy Boaz was named Civilian Employee of the Year. She began her career at the police department as a dispatcher in October of 1992 and is the most senior person in communication where she has received numerous commendations for her service.
Chief Hundley said Boaz is “a professional and always pleasant to be around.”
“She will assist anyone without hesitation and is an asset to the department,” the chief said.
Boaz holds the Advanced Telecommunication Proficiency Certificate from the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement, and in her 21 years with the department, has been named Civilian Employee of the Year three other times in 1998, 2008 and 2011.
Officer Josh Garrison was named Rookie Officer of the Year. He began his career with the department in January of 2012. As with all new officers, he was assigned to uniform patrol, where he as demonstrated a great aptitude for law enforcement tasks.
“He is well received by our citizens and his coworkers,” the chief said. “He has a passion for law enforcement and displays that passion daily.”
Officer Chris Widner, named the department’s Officer of the Year, began in May of 2010. An officer who is not shy about volunteering his time outside the department, Widner was one of the first officers to approach the chief about assisting other law enforcement agencies during the recent tornado outbreak in the DFW area.
“Chris has distinguished himself in his work of uniform patrol in the manner of how he takes care of his day to day contacts,” Chief Hundley said. “He provide the same level of service regardless of the seriousness of the call.”
“He tries to take care of problems on the street before they become issues for everyone.”
The Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association honored Cindy Ringwald, who attended the inaugural academy with the department and was instrumental in forming the Alumni Association.
She has served as a secretary for the group and has continually provided many hours of service for not only the association, but working parades, civic events and patrol duties as a member of the Citizens on Patrol.
Ringwald was named the Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association’s Volunteer of the Year.
Lt. Doug Murphy — for the second year in a row — received the Top Gun Marksmanship award. Murphy, who is assigned to the criminal investigation division, supervises the ‘B’ squad. He is a counter-sniper assigned to the SWAT team and has been with the department for 15 years.
“We are very proud of these individuals and their accomplishments this year,” Chief Hundley said. “I would like to point out that numerous officers and employees are nominated by their coworkers for these awards, and it is difficult for our employees to select just one for each award.”
“The police department is only as good as its personnel, and I am very proud that we have a good department because of the great personnel that we have.”
By Josh Allen, eParisExtra