The ConnectedCOPS Leadership Award finalists have been determined. Approximately two dozen nominations for 21 officers from three countries were received for this award. The finalists in this category are pioneers, have demonstrated exemplary leadership and have mentored their peers.

Dale Stockton is a Senior Editor at Law Officer magazine, and one of seven judges for this category. “Leadership is so incredibly important in public safety, especially when you’re entering a relatively new area like social media,” he said, and added “It is really encouraging to see so many powerful examples of individuals who have stepped up and are leading the way for others.”

ConnectedCOPS Leadership Award

This award is given to the individual officer up to and including the rank of Sergeant (or its international equivalent) at any worldwide law enforcement agency who has singularly demonstrated exemplary and selfless leadership in the use of social media to improve public safety and/or enhance his or her agency’s community engagement and reputation. This individual is creative, innovative and fearless and shares what s/he knows by mentoring others, participating in public speaking opportunities and leading by example.

Because there were so many great leaders nominated in this category, the judges selected five finalists. They are listed below in no significant order:

Special Constable Tom Stirling, North Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Special Constable Tom Stirling worked diligently to bring the North Yorkshire Police Service into digital communications on his own time by designing a mobile application. He then taught himself how to program the app resulting in “NYP mobile”, the first mobile app in policing in England, all at no cost to his department. His work has earned him the “Outstanding Police Communicator” Award from the Association of Police Communicators and has been emulated by other departments.

Police Constable Ed Rogerson, North Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Police Constable Ed Rogerson is regarded as possibly the first officer in the UK to use social media for community engagement. Rogerson is nationally and internationally known for his use of social media and is often cited as an example of best practice. He regularly speaks at professional events about his use of social media in policing. His work has gained him near celebrity status among youth in the UK as they recognize him from Twitter and YouTube.

Constable Scott Mills, Toronto Police Service, Canada
Constable Mills is highly regarded as a global leader in police adoption of social media. One of his foremost qualities is that he works in service of others, in relentless pursuit to improve public safety and support others to do the same. Mills is the quintessential pioneer and has put in countless hours, he has endured much criticism from those who don’t or won’t understand, and yet he persists. Through his sincere and consistent approach, Mills has even gained support and a considerable following from unlikely groups, including gang members and activists.

Sergeant Rob Sutten, Portsmouth City Central Police, United Kingdom
Sergeant Sutten has been the leader and champion at the Hampshire Constabulary in the UK for his groundbreaking local use of Twitter. He is said to be innovate, charismatic and jovial. With his media department, he developed a fictional character called “Ninah” to develop crime prevention messages for children and incorporated humor and games. Ninah also tweets real-time updates about committed offenses, the thrill of her chase, as well as the arrest and result of conviction.

Sergeant Jay Turner, Hamilton Police Service, Canada
Sergeant Turner has taken Twitter use to a new level and is widely regarded as innovative and humorous. Because of the strength of his messaging on Twitter, he has significantly improved the public communication from HPS to citizens. Sergeant Turner mentors others at HPS, having personally developed five of the agency’s seven accounts, overcoming reluctance from his colleagues and supervisors.

This is the final awards category to be announced this week. Finalists in the other awards categories were announced earlier in the week on this blog and can be found at the links provided below. Winners will be announced September 10th at The SMILE Conference™ in Richmond, Virginia.

Previous finalists were announced earlier this week:

The ConnectedCOPS Awards were created by LAwS Communications with the intent of recognizing the good work being done by individual officers and law enforcement agencies with social media. The international law enforcement community will be considered for these awards. Any officer or agency anywhere in the world is eligible.