SAVANNAH - The Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police (GACP) has named GBI Director Vernon Keenan as the 2008 Outstanding Police Chief of the Year. Director Keenan was selected as the recipient for his proactive contributions to his agency, to the GACP and to the state’s law enforcement community. Director Keenan was presented with this prestigious award Tuesday night, July 15, 2008, at GACP’s annual summer training conference banquet in Savannah.
Director Keenan is a graduate of Valdosta State University and the Law Enforcement Command College in Columbus, where he earned his Masters Degree in Public Administration. Director Kennan began his career with the DeKalb County Police Department in 1972. In 1973, he graduated from the GBI Basic Agent Class, thus beginning his career with the GBI. Throughout his 35 years in law enforcement, Director Keenan’s leadership and commitment to excellence is demonstrated on a continual basis.
In partnership with the GACP and others, Director Keenan was instrumental in the publication of “A Law Enforcement Officer’s Guide to Open Records in Georgia.” In addition, he provided GBI personnel to assist GACP with ad hoc committees regarding Electronic Control Weapons in Georgia and Police Vehicle Pursuits. Director Kennan has served on the Advisory Board for the Georgia International Law Enforcement Exchange Program since 2002. Since its inception in 2004, Director Keenan has been instrumental in the formation of the Georgia Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) program. The CIT has provided training to over 2,000 Georgia officers in over 150 law enforcement agencies. Because of his efforts associated with the CIT program, the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) at their upcoming training conference which is to be held in San Diego, California in October will soon honor Director Keenan.
As head of the GBI, Director Keenan oversees Georgia’s criminal investigative agency with 806 employees and a 2007 fiscal year budget of $84.5 million in state and federal funds. In 2004 during the G-8 Summit at Sea Island, Director Keenan served as a member of the State Homeland Security Central Command responsible for protection of public safety, facilitation of law enforcement and coordination of state personnel. Director Keenan has been the leader in the formation of the Georgia Terrorism Intelligence Project (GTIP). In 2004, the GBI was given the funding to develop and implement a state-wide multi-agency anti-terrorism program.
Frank V. Rotondo, the Executive Director of the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police, said, “Director Keenan is an outstanding member of our association. In considering his many achievements, what is most apparent is that he is a team player. He values collaboration in many forms – not just between law enforcement agencies, but also among many different units of government, as well as the citizens of the State of Georgia.”
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