BY JOEY REYNOLDS
As this is my last Association Perspective as your President, I want to take the time and thank all of you for allowing me the honor to serve you. The time has certainly passed quickly since you elected me to the National Executive Board in Louisville in 2009. It has been an incredible journey walking along side our members around the world. This is truly the most amazing law enforcement association and it is so because of our members. Your incoming President Scott Dumas is excited to take over at the Annual Conference in Washington, D.C. I do need to warn you that his accent is a lot different than my slow southern drawl. Scott is a wonderful person and great friend and I can promise you this Association will be in good hands under Scott’s leadership.
It has been a busy couple of months for our profession as well as our Association. I had the honor of representing all of you at several events including the Latin America/Caribbean Conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina; the Florida Chapter Conference in Daytona Beach Shores; LEEDA, our sister association annual conference in Jacksonville, Florida; the Section II Chapter Officer’s Meeting in Minocqua, Wisconsin, and the Asia/Pacific Conference in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Although all of these events were in different geographical locations they all have many things in common. They all demonstrate how dedicated our members are to our profession, the communities they serve and this great association.
This is also a time when we mourn with our brothers and sisters in our profession, their agencies, their communities and most importantly the families of the law enforcement officers who have given the ultimate sacrifice for their communities. I know all of you, like me, kept those affected by the tragic deaths in our thoughts and prayers as we remembered them during the National Police Memorial Week.
As is the tradition of the FBI National Academy, the 268th Session and the National Academy Training Unit hosted the “Cops Kids” event at Quantico. I know this is a rewarding and painful event for each National Academy Session that is at Quantico during this week. Thanks to the 268th Session for making this week a little less stressful for those children of our lost officers. The Bible reminds us that “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Please keep all of those affected by these untimely deaths in your thoughts and prayers.
The 19th Session of our Youth Leadership Program arrived at Quantico on June 22nd to start their experience as YLP students. They were joined by an amazing group of counselors and staff made up of members of this association who take their personal time to give back to our association through the YLP. We are deeply grateful for their time commitment and leadership during YLP. This session had 60 candidates from all 50 states including Washington, DC and Puerto Rico. This session also had two international students: one from Germany and one from Peru. I had the honor of attending the graduation and can honestly tell you that the Youth Leadership Program is indeed our “Crown Jewel.”
I also had the honor of being on stage as the 268th Session graduated on June 7th. I was able to shake every graduate’s hand as they walked across the stage and personally welcome them to our Association. One amazing highlight of the 268th Session was celebrated by FBI Executive Assistant Director Joshua Skule as the 50,000th graduate walked across the stage. Executive Assistant Director Skule presented a “Commemorative Yellow Brick” to the National Academy Associates.
I hope all of you are planning to attend the 53rd Annual Conference in Washington, D.C., July 30 - August 2, 2017. I know Michael Spochart and the Conference Committee have been working hard and are excited to host this year’s conference. As an add on to this year’s conference the National Academy Unit has invited us back to the FBI Academy on Thursday following the conference for a “Homecoming”! This will be a great opportunity to go back to the academy for tours, lunch and demonstrations. I want to thank our partners at the FBI, especially Assistant Director David Resch for making this happen. What a great opportunity to return and see the upgrades to the Academy including the Executive Office and the National Academy Store.
I want to welcome Jeff Kruithoff to the Executive Board as the National Board Chaplain. This was a difficult appointment by the Board. Not that Jeff wasn’t an amazing candidate and will do an awesome job serving our Association. The truth is we had so many incredible applicants that it was very hard to narrow the selection process down to a final candidate. This is a good problem to have and speaks volumes for the character and dedication of our members. Thank you to all who showed an interest in serving as our Chaplain. Jeff will be shadowing our current Chaplain Dan Bateman at the annual conference and then they will transition after our reception at IACP. Please reach out to Dan and thank him for his service these past four years and welcome Jeff to the new role.
In closing, I want to thank all of you for what you do day in and day out for our profession and our communities. I also want to thank this Executive Board and Executive Office Staff for all they do to make this Association and your membership experience what it is. In addition, I would like to thank Barry Thomas as he transitions off of the Executive Board. Barry is a great friend and has always been my go-to person for advice on Association matters. We will miss his leadership and dedication to this Association.
This is an emotional time for me as I transition out of the President role and have also announced that I am retiring from my law enforcement career of 40 years. I know many of you have done this as well and understand the emotion and nervousness that goes along with major life changes. I intend to transition to the private sector where I can stay connected with our profession and most importantly the FBINAA. I hope to be able to stay in contact with all the great friends I have made during my 21 years of FBINAA membership.
God Bless and Stay Safe,
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