Division of Criminal Justice Services

The Police Officer of the Year Award

The Police Officer of the Year Award provides statewide recognition of the police officer or officers who have demonstrated exceptional valor in service to the people of New York State, thereby upholding the highest traditions of law enforcement.

POYA photo

From left to right: Trooper Lawrence F. Gurdo II, Trooper Donald L. Atkinson, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul, DCJS Executive Deputy Commisioner Michael C. Green, New York State Police Superintendent George P. Beach II.

2015 Recipients: Trooper Donald L. Atkinson and Trooper Lawrence F. Gurdo II

Trooper Atikinson and Trooper Gurdo were recognized for helping rescue a 14-year-old girl who had been swimming near the Whitney Point Dam in Broome County on July 15, 2015. Both men braved cold water and an extremely strong undercurrent to pull the teen to safety from near the mouth of the quarter-mile-long intake tunnel.

Read the Press Release »