Chamber Chairman Rob Rosen joined members of the Osceola Resort Area Council Board of Directors at their general membership event on June 18 as they honored Back the Blue Award winners from the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office for the months of January, February, & March.
Chairman Rosen announced the Chamber’s Back the Blue initiative at the Annual Meeting in February. Each month this initiative will award two local law enforcement officers – one from the Kissimmee Police Department and one from the Sheriff’s Office – for their outstanding contributions to keeping our community safe. “A business community starts with safety; without a safe community there is no business community,” said Chairman Rosen. Each award recipient receives a specially designed “challenge coin,” and a prize packet contributed by members of the Downtown Kissimmee and Osceola Resort Area Councils.
While the Downtown Kissimmee Area Council has partnered with Chairman Rosen to help honor award winners from KPD, ORAC has taken it upon themselves to help award the Sheriff’s Department’s finest each month. In April they presented Deputy Heather Collins, a school resource officer at Boggy Creek Elementary, with the first award. At their general membership/Tourism Safety Seminar event on Tuesday, June 18 they took the opportunity to back track and honor winners from January, February, and March.
For the month of January, the Back the Blue award went to Deputy Sheriff Chris Hall for his ambition and dedication to protect the citizens of Osceola County. He was recognized for the successful prosecution of a violent gang member who had a hidden firearm in an unknown location. On August 12, 2018, he responded to a call pertaining to an aggravated assault involving a gang member and his significant other. By using verbal commands, Deputy Hall then detained the gang member and his significant other and began to investigate the location of the firearm. Deputy Hall’s persistence in locating the firearm and in securing the protection of the citizens ensured the arrest of the gang member.
The Back the Blue award for February is contentedly awarded to Community Service Officer Jessica Mojica for continuously demonstrating maximum effort in her duties. Along with her general tasks of writing out of county reports, contacting victims, and forwarding reports to outside agencies, she frequently surpasses expectations. Throughout the year of 2018, she cleared 70% of her assigned cases while simultaneously assisting other detectives with their cases. Being the only member of her unit to speak fluent Spanish, she has taken on the lead role in Spanish-language fraud presentations to the community. CSO Mojica has shown her commitment and dedication to the community and is highly recognized for her achievements.
The March recipient is Detective James Forgey for his dedication to his work and his persistence in keeping Osceola County safe. He is recognized for his skills in investigating and upending a local commercial burglary threat. In January, he made an enormous effort to identify two suspects who had stolen from a local Wal-Mart. Detective Forgey made it possible to track down the criminals because of his hard work and ability to work with others. His continued ambition to help the community has led to the prosecution of several criminals. The community is safer because of his efforts.
Amanda Hidalgo contributed to this blog post.