The RSA Installs The 2015 Board Of Directors And Recognizes Outstanding Members
By Tom Pigeon
The RSA starts every year by welcoming incoming Board Members, thanking outgoing members for their service, and recognizing outstanding performance and bravery from its members. This year’s Installation and Awards Dinner was held Jan. 23 at the Riverside Convention Center.
During the day, Chapter Directors attended workshops where they learned about issues that will help them tackle their duties in the coming year. Superior Court Commissioner Bambi Moyer led them in a swearing in ceremony.
The Installation Meeting included addresses by Sheriff Stan Sniff and Riverside County District Attorney Michael Hestrin. Workshops included an overview of RSA bylaws and structure, political action and legislative affairs, financial operations, RSA charities, an overview of the RSA Benefit Trust, contract negotiations, and updates on significant legal cases.
In the evening, the 2015 Awards Dinner took place with radio personality Peter Demetriou acting as Master of Ceremonies.
“The Awards Dinner is an opportunity to recognize all the work our directors do on a voluntary basis,” RSA Executive Director Darryl Drott said. “We also recognize the achievements of many of the members working out there.”
Included in the awards was a Lifetime Achievement Award given to retired Sheriff Corporal Corky Bell. This is only the third time the RSA has handed out this prestigious award. Drott said Corky earned it through a lifetime of service. Bell completed a 20-year career in the Marine Corps, then served another 18 years in law enforcement as a deputy. During his tenure in the Riverside Sheriff’s Department, Corky also helped found the Debbie Chisholm Memorial Foundation, which he now serves as its Executive Director. Bell has put in “countless hours,” Drott said, to help critically ill children through DCMF.
Director of the Year Awards went to Deputy Sheriff Chad Marlatt (Ch. 8: Hemet / San Jacinto / Aviation) and retired Deputy Sheriff Dave Nelson (Chapt. 13, Retirees).
A first this year at the event was bestowing a Medal of Valor award, which went to Deputy Sheriff Paul Verostek. Deputy Verostek responded to an early morning report of a home fire. When he arrived at the house, he found a trailer ablaze, the flames spreading toward the house. With fire crews still preparing, Deputy Verostek entered the house when he heard cries for help. He found an elderly woman huddling in the laundry room. He was able to get her out, and then went back to find her husband in the backyard trying to save his burning son by spraying him with a garden hose. The son had perished, but Deputy Verostek was able to extricate the father.
“He risked himself,” Drott said. “If not for him, the mother and father may not have made it out.”
The evening was an opportunity to recognize acts of bravery from across the department and the year (see page 8 for a rundown of award recipients).
“Kudos to Judy Drott and Julie Kelley, the two of them worked tirelessly to put the Awards event on,” Darryl said.