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April 29, 2011 - 2:26pm

Kiwanis Club hands out annual awards for Law Day

posted by Howard B. Owens in law enforcement, kiwanis club of batavia, law day.

Members of the Genesee County legal community gathered at Bohn's Restaurant on Thursday evening for the Law Day Observance & Law Enforcement Recognition Dinner.

Above, Deputy Ron Meides receives an award from Sheriff Gary Maha while District Attorney Lawrence Friedman looks on. Second photo, Investigator Leo Hunter accepts an award from State Police. Presenting the award, left, was Lt. John Aqualina of the NYSP.


Officer Emily Clark, Le Roy PD, received an award.


The four law enforcement award winners, Meides, Clark, Batavia PD Det. Paul Caffo and Hunter.

The Batavia High School Mock Trial Team, winners of the local competition for the ninth straight year. On the team (though not in picture order, nor are all members pictured): Will Ely, Chad Luce, Jenna Bauer, Evan Sutherland, Patrick Flynn, Maura Chmielowiec, Mckenzie Stevens, Zeke Lynn, Eva Reda-Kendrick, Nate Kabel, Matt Gabrielle, Taylor Sanders, Katlin Logsdon, Kaitlynn Walker and Trey Abdella. The teacher coach, back row, left, is Brandon Ricci, and the attorney coach, back row, right, is Billy Tedford.

Pastor Philip Green, center, with Sheriff Maha and Undersheriff Bill Sheron, also received a special recognition award for his work with the department. Green was the 2011 National Sheriff's Association "Chaplain of the Year."

Sarah Palermo was honored by GCASA for her anti-DWI contributions.

UPDATE: To purchase pictures, click here.

Full press release for the law enforcement awards after the jump:

Kiwanis President Lawrence Friedman announced the awards during a dinner held at Bohn’s Restaurant on Thursday, April 28, 2011. The awards dinner was held in partnership with the Genesee County Bar Association during their observance of Law Day. The honored speaker at the dinner was Victor I. Vieth, JD, Director of the National Child Prevention Training Center, Winona State University, Winona, Minn.

Background Information about the Award

The purpose of the Law Enforcement Recognition Award is to honor those members of our local law enforcement agencies who have demonstrated principles and ideals consistent with those promoted by the Kiwanis Club of Batavia.

Nominations for the award were evaluated based upon the candidates’ actions and achievements, in their personal and professional lives, which demonstrate precepts consistent with those of the Kiwanis Club of Batavia, specifically: - A commitment to human and spiritual qualities, rather than material values. - Adoption and application of high social, business and professional standards. - Citizenship and service to the community and their agency. - A desire to create and maintain sound public opinion and high idealism, which promotes compassion, justice, patriotism and goodwill.

All sworn and civilian employees serving in local law enforcement agencies within Genesee County are eligible for this award.


Detective Paul B. Caffo, City of Batavia Police Department Detective Paul B. Caffo has been a member of the City of Batavia Police Department for 18 years. Detective Caffo grew up in Batavia and graduated from Batavia High School in 1986. During his career with the Batavia Police Department, Detective Caffo has received numerous commendations for his work as a police officer and detective. The overwhelming theme in Detective Caffo’s work is his spirit of cooperation with members of his department and other law enforcement agencies. Detective Caffo is currently assigned to the Local Law Enforcement Drug Task Force and makes himself available to officers seven days a week and 24 hours a day. Even with this demand on his time, Detective Caffo still assists the Detective Bureau with criminal investigations and rotating with the on-call schedule. Detective Caffo resides in the Town of Batavia with his wife, Kelly, and was nominated for this award by his commanding officer, Police Chief Randy Baker.

Deputy Ronald E. Meides – Genesee County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Ronald E. Meides is a 20-year veteran with the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office. He started as a Corrections Officer in 1991 and was appointed a Deputy Sheriff in 1993. Deputy Meides is currently assigned to road patrol and works out of the Sheriff’s Darien Satellite station. Deputy Meides is a dedicated, compassionate and professional law enforcement officer and performs his duties with enthusiasm. He has had extensive training during his tenure with the Sheriff’s Office and was the 2009 Officer of the Year. Deputy Meides assists his community in many ways. He is an active member of the Darien Fire Department and has coached T-ball and fall soccer for the Bennington Town Youth Athletics. He is also a soccer coach for the Attica Youth Athletics. Deputy Meides has assisted the Boy Scouts by participating in the 2007 Merit Badge College Event in the areas of traffic safety and fingerprinting. Annually, Deputy Meides instructs at Darien Lake with regard on how to recognize fraudulent or altered drivers’ licenses. Deputy Meides is very aggressive in DWI enforcement and in 1995 was recognized by the Genesee County Chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) for his outstanding efforts. Deputy Meides is the recipient of two Commendation Awards and two Meritorious Service Awards and has received numerous letters of appreciation from the citizens he serves. Deputy Meides resides in the Town of Darien with his wife, Mary Beth, and their children. Deputy Meides was nominated for this award by his commanding officer, Sheriff Gary T. Maha.

Police Officer Emily J. Clark, Village of Le Roy Police Department Police Officer Emily J. Clark has been a member of the Village of Le Roy Police Department for six years. She is currently assigned as a patrol officer and also works with the Local Law Enforcement Drug Task Force. Officer Clark is known for her positive attitude and has a determination to do the job right. She tries to make her work with the public a good experience and is always courteous and professional. Last year, Officer Clark assisted the Local Law Enforcement Drug Task Force for several months, which led to the arrests of several individuals for methamphetamine distribution within the county. Recently, she investigated a forged prescription case and worked with the Drug Task Force, which led to the arrest of an individual being charged with 100 felonies. Officer Clark also has a great rapport with the teenagers in the community, to a point where they feel comfortable in talking with her about police and non-police related matters. As a result of this rapport, she has developed many leads on open cases, but more importantly, she is a resource for some of the community’s more troubled young people. Officer Clark resides in the Village of Le Roy and was nominated for this award by her commanding officer, Police Chief Christopher Hayward.

Investigator Leo M. Hunter, New York State Police Investigator Leo M. Hunter is a 28-year veteran with the New York State Police. Investigator Hunter is currently assigned to the Bureau of Criminal Investigations and works out of the State Police Batavia Headquarters. His primary duties include the investigation of felony-level crimes, including crimes against children, sexual offenses, burglaries, assaults, etc. Investigator Hunter has been involved in thousands of investigations for the citizens of Genesee County. Investigator Hunter is a lifelong resident of Genesee County, has raised six children and currently resides in the City of Batavia. Investigator Hunter was nominated for this award by his commanding officer, Major Christopher L. Cummings, Troop “A” Commander.

Kiwanis President Larry Friedman presented the awards on behalf of the Kiwanis Club of Batavia.


The “Charles L. Mancuso Award” was presented to the members of the Batavia High School Mock Trial Team as winners of the 2011 GLOWS (Genesee, Livingston, Orleans, Wyoming and Steuben counties) District Competition in the New York State Bar Association High School Mock Trial Tournament. The award reads “Dedicated to the Memory of an Outstanding Attorney-Citizen." Mr. Mancuso, a Batavia lawyer, served as coordinator of the local competition until his untimely death five years ago. The BHS team members honored at the dinner included: Will Ely, Chad Luce, Jenna Bauer, Evan Sutherland, Patrick Flynn, Maura Chmielowiec, Mckenzie Stevens, Zeke Lynn, Eva Reda-Kendrick, Nate Kabel, Matt Gabrielle, Taylor Sanders, Kaitlin Logsdon, Kaitlynn Walker and Trey Abdella. The team, coached by Social Studies Teacher Brandon Ricci and Attorney William Tedford, has competed in, and won, the local tournament for each of the past nine years.

Genesee County District Attorney Lawrence Friedman, who serves as president of the Kiwanis Club of Batavia and coordinator of the local Mock Trial Program, and Genesee County Bar Association President Durin Rogers presented the award.


A Special Recognition Award was presented to Pastor Philip A. Green who was selected by the National Sheriffs’ Association as its “2011 Chaplain of the Year." Pastor Green volunteers as Chaplain for the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office and makes himself available whenever needed. He assists officers when making death notifications to victims’ families and during other traumatic events. Each year he sponsors and organizes “Red and Blue Sunday” at his church, whereby he and his congregation recognize and express their appreciation to first responders and elected officials within the county. Pastor Green will be presented the “Chaplain of the Year” award by the National Sheriffs’ Association this June in St. Louis. Pastor Green is senior pastor for the First Baptist Church in Pavilion, NY, where he resides with his wife, Marun, and their three children.

The Special Recognition Award was presented by Sheriff Gary T. Maha.


The Genesee Council on Alcoholism and Substance Abuse (GCASA) presented its Kathy Seymour Volunteer Service Award during the dinner. This award is presented to a citizen, volunteer, law enforcement officer or emergency medical service provider whose actions and commitment have helped to make our community a safer place. This year’s award was presented to Sarah Palermo. Sarah is a volunteer on the DWI Victim Impact Panel.

The award was presented by Laura Ricci, Prevention Educator/VIP Coordinator, GCASA.

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