MATTHEWS – The work of Matthews police officers often goes unnoticed. That’s why the Matthews Rotary Club has partnered with the Matthews Police Department to recognize the work of officers.
In a new partnership, MPD and the rotary will recognize an officer each month.
Police Chief Clark Pennington said nominations are made from peer-to-peer recognitions, in which officers nominate each other based on acts of heroism, acts of kindness, exceptional investigative techniques and the willingness to go above and beyond for the police department and the residents of Matthews.
“I am extremely proud to be a member of this organization because I’ve learned that every one of the 63 sworn and the 19 civilian officers go above and beyond every single day,” Pennington said. “This is an opportunity for you guys to share in that and to recognize those officers.”
The Matthews Rotary Club will read the nominations and select one officer each month to recognize. At the end of every quarter, officers will receive a plaque and be presented to the club in an awards ceremony.
The first recipients of the awards were officers Ronda Sprinkle, Candis Kinsey and Tim Aycock for the months of October, November and December, respectively.
Sprinkle works as a school resource officer at Elizabeth Lane, Crown Point and Matthews elementary schools. She was recognized because of her commitment to the schools, as well as her ability to be on call and present at Butler High School and Crestdale Middle School when needed.
Kinsey was recognized for taking the steps to go above and beyond as an officer by working toward receiving a certificate in general forensics at Central Piedmont Community College. The certification program requires officers complete 232 training hours and 17 classes, including various crime scene investigative-related classes. This is not required by the MPD, but it makes Kinsey a valuable resource to the department, according to Pennington.
Aycock serves as the police department’s public information officer. He was recognized for his positive attitude and his willingness to help others in and out of the police department. Aycock’s job involves being at the scene of crimes and situations to gather information and speak with the media. He was recently responsible for relaying information about the Feb. 6 tornado, as well as the Amber Alert regarding a missing child in Matthews.
Pennington said the best way to recognize the work of police officers is to bring to the attention of local community leaders, which he sees in the Matthews Rotary Club. He hopes to continue sharing their stories.
“What this program does is tie our values into the community as a whole,” Pennington said. “We look at integrity, honesty, respect and professionalism.”