The Zephyrhills Police Department has recognized its annual award recipients for 2016.
Police Chief David Shears recognized the department’s annual award recipients for 2016 Police Officer of the Year, Civilian of the Year and Volunteer of the Year during the City Council’s Feb. 13 meeting.
The department selected David Wainwright as the William R. Eiland Police Officer of the Year. Wainwright, a field training officer, has been with the department for 13 years.
Wainwright, who holds a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Saint Leo University, regularly performs as an acting sergeant.
“His decision-making skills are right on task,” Shears said.
The department also honored Building Maintenance Specialist Gene Rains as the department’s Civilian of the Year. Shears was especially complimentary of Rains, highlighting his “high level of professionalism, courtesy, efficiency and ability to perform his duties at ZPD.”
Shears added: “He brings a higher level of experience and work ethic to his position than would be normally be seen in his job classification, and is a great asset to the department. He is always willing to assist and handle any project, no matter how small or large the task.”
Eleanor Cooley, who’s been with the department since 2009, was selected as the department’s Volunteer of the Year. Cooley volunteered more than 105 hours “with a smile and positive attitude.”
“She interacts well with all age groups and enjoys helping others,” Shears said.
Department volunteers, the chief said, typically assist with fingerprinting, event supervision, public education, bicycle helmet fitting and literature distribution.
The nominations committee is chaired by Capt. Robert McKinney, and selections are signed off by Shears.
“I have to say this year my job was very easy,” Shears said.
Wainwright, Rains and Cooley also were recognized during the department’s annual award ceremony on Jan. 25 at the Elks Lodge.
Published Feb. 22 2017