GREENSBURG — School Resource Officer Lt. Jarrod McCalvin was named the Greensburg Breakfast Optimist Club’s Law Enforcement Official of the Year at a recent breakfast meeting held at Decatur County Memorial Hospital.

The breakfast meal and use of the facility were donated by DCMH as a special “thank you” to the city, county and state law enforcement individuals in attendance and in the field.

Club President Tina Hoeing noted the Optimist Club has presented the Law Enforcement Official of the Year award since 1985.

“This is a prestigious honor that acknowledges police officers, prosecuting attorneys and judges for their efforts in combating crime in our community,” Hoeing said. “The award is held in conjunction with National Police Week, which honors police personnel across the nation. Today, we would like to announce this years recipient as Lieutenant Jarrod McCalvin.”

As the assemblage ate breakfast and enjoyed fellowship, McCalvin spoke to the Daily News about receiving the honor.

“This was a definite surprise and an honor to win this award. It was very much unexpected,” he said. “I’m very humbled and very lucky that so many have helped me during my entire law enforcement career.”

“This is not a me effort, this goes all the way back to the city having enough faith to hire me 17 years ago, and the field training officers that brought me up, and all the officers that I still continue to learn from today. Your career’s never really over, you can continue to learn along the way,” McCalvin continued.

He went on to say he loves his job.

“When I first started as an SRO officer, I was excited about going into the schools and working with the kids and seeing the difference you can make in their lives,” McCalvin said. “I always say I’ve been blessed since the day I started and I continue to be blessed to this day. I’m excited to be working in the community I grew up in, with my family and friends.”

After the meal, some of those present shared anecdotes about this year’s honoree.

Chief of Police Brendan Bridges spoke, explaining that he and McCalvin were hired within 10 months of each other 17 years ago.

“If it weren’t for Jarrod, I honestly probably would not be here. We immediately hit it off as friends, and his wife and family took me under their wing because I wasn’t originally a member of this community. Jarrod’s parents took me in as another son, and so I’ve got a lot of stories,” he said to general laughter from the attendees.

“Jarrod is a very ambitious and eager officer who became an instructor early. At the junior high, it takes a very special person to deal with that age group, and Jarrod has really stepped up to that and done very well. Since he started as the SRO for GJHS, students arrests have decreased and ... there’s been a general decrease of incidents in the junior high and the high school as well,” Bridges continued. “When they announced ... that the GCHS SADD Club had been awarded as the Outstanding Club of the Year, I know that Jarrod was pleased. ... All in all, what he’s doing for the youth in this community is amazing!”

Greensburg Community Schools Superintendent Tom Hunter said, “We’ve always had a very special relationship with law enforcement in this community, and they help us in so many different ways. Hopefully, we help them as well having their SROs in the schools. Jarrod’s done a great job at the junior high and with our SADD Clubs. It’s great to see a person leading by example, and Jarrod does that every day. We are really happy to see him winning this award, and we have all been bettered by working with him.”

Contact Bill Rethlake at 812-663-3111, ext. 7011 or email at bill.rethlake@greensburgdailynews.com.

Previous Winners

Past Recipients of the Greensburg Breakfast Optimist Club Law Enforcement Official of the Year Award

1985 - Hugh Chambers

1986 - Ed Schwendemann

1987 - John Oldham

1988 - Ed Lewis

1989 - Lester Gay

1990 - Robert Clark

1991 - Mike Rilery

1992 - Larry Snyder

1993 - Dick Baldwin

1994 - Steve Delph

1995 - Keith Gay

1996 - Mark Bailey

1997 - Andrew Winzenread

1998 - Fred Huser

1999 - Darryl Templeton

2000 - Bruce Copple

2001 - John Westhafer

2002 - Bill Meyerrose

2003 - Darin Lucas

2004 - Anthony Scott

2005 - Rick Underhill

2006 - Greg Allen

2007 - Dennis Blodgett

2008 - Matt Haviland

2009 - Brian McCullough

2010 - William O. Smith

2011 - Pete Tressler

2012 - Stacy Chasteen

2013 - John Westhafer

2014 - Rob Goodfellow

2015 - Brendan Bridges

2016 - Chris Bridges

2017 - James Herbert

2018 - Chris Hellmich

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