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Posted on: May 18, 2020

Police Awards

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Every year, the Apache Junction Police Department honors its outstanding employees.

This year the department’s awards ceremony, usually held at the Dolce Vita retirement community, was cancelled due to the worldwide medical crisis of the coronavirus. The department would like to recognize those outstanding accomplishments that were made in 2019.

The department’s top honors fall under four outstanding service awards: the “Joe Sabitus” Volunteer of the Year, Civilian Employee of the Year, Police Telecommunications Officer of the Year and Police Officer of the Year.

“Joe Sabitus” Volunteer of the Year: Teri Bakken

Teri BakkenTeri’s selfless dedication as a volunteer assisting the community and media liaison office needs is unparalleled. Teri’s work is crucial for the continual operation of several programs provided by police.

Teri inputs and organizes all the data that keeps our trespassing program operating smoothly. She collects and logs all the hours of every volunteer working in Paws and Claws and the department. For her outstanding work effort, Teri Bakken is the 2019 recipient of the “Joe Sabitus” Volunteer of the Year award.

Civilian Employee of the Year: Janine Shablow

Janine ShablowJanine has been with the police department since June 2017, and is the senior administrative assistant to Chief of Police Thomas E. Kelly. She consistently leads by example, supporting the needs of the chief and the department. She has made significant improvements within the department and is the department’s grant contact, handling multiple grants, which involves dealing with the financial figures and reports that are critical to funding for various projects throughout the department. She is the point of contact for the department for funding of the task force participants reimbursements (DEA, DPS Auto Theft, DPS Gang).

She works closely with human resources, and has assisted with all employee questions. She brought all the personnel training and employee files up-to-date and completed the annual public records destruction as mandated by Arizona Public Records statutes.

In addition to all the senior administrative assistant items, Janine has served on the city Wellness Committee as the ambassador for the department for employee health initiatives. She also commandeered the department’s toy drive, making sure that no child goes without a toy for the holiday. Janine always comes to work with a smile and energy that carries her through a busy schedule each day.

For her outstanding efforts, the Apache Junction Police Department recognizes Janine Shablow as the Civilian Employee of the Year 2019.

Telecommunications Officer of the Year: Lisa Eminhizer

Lisa EminhizerLisa has been working for the city of Apache Junction for 30-plus years. The work Lisa performs is crucial for the success in the communications division; working the terminals, setting schedules so dispatch is always covered and training new dispatchers; taking the time to explain things and instilling confidence.

Lisa took on the additional role of interim Telecommunications Manager for the police department from November 2018 until May 2019. Her duties as interim manager included radio inventory, CAD and RMS upgrade with all related troubleshooting. She represented the communications division at regional telecommunications meetings, was part of the initiative working on getting grants and she worked closely with vendors to procure needed equipment and supplies.

In addition to her regular duties and assignments, she is the treasurer for the Apache Junction Police Officer’s Association and the coordinator for the Special Olympics fundraising events at the police department.

On Sept. 23, 2019, Lisa was on duty when Apache Junction was hit with a severe rainstorm causing flooding in many parts of the city. She was part of the outstanding team of dispatchers that answered the mass number of 911 calls, while dispatching our officers to emergency locations.

For her outstanding efforts, the Apache Junction Police Department recognizes Lisa Eminhizer as the Police Telecommunications Officer of the Year 2019.

Police Officer of the Year: Officer Cameron Kellogg

Cameron KelloggOfficer Kellogg’s nomination is the result of recommendations from his peers and supervisors at the Apache Junction Police Department. They recognized his exceptional aptitude with electronic devices and the use of database resources to locate suspects and obtain investigative information that he readily shared with other department members to locate and arrest offenders within the community.

Officer Kellogg strives to expand his skill base and has recently tested to become a range master for the department. Becoming a range master is not an easy task, and he dedicated numerous hours training and preparing for the position. His performance in the testing was ranked well above the other candidates, and he was selected for this position.

In addition, on one call, he successfully deployed “stop sticks” during a police pursuit. This resulted in the apprehension of the suspect. This was one of the few times that stop stick deployment was effective. Officer Kellogg also successfully investigated several cyber-crimes involving suspects and underage victims using Facebook and other social media. The effort he put into the cases was exceptional.

Officer Kellogg is always willing to put in the extra effort to assist our citizens. He saved an elderly male from drowning due to rushing stormwater; he also selflessly assisted a stranded motorist by physically pushing their vehicle approximately 200 yards north to the high school parking lot.

For his outstanding efforts, the Apache Junction Police Department recognizes Officer Cameron Kellogg as the Police Officer of the Year 2019.

Additional personnel of AJPD were recognized for their actions that saved lives, were heroic in nature and led to apprehensions of suspects through outstanding investigative abilities and improved police operations.


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