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Congratulations to the 2023 Valor Award Recipients


Silver Medal of Valor

Sgt. George Smoot of the New Market Police Department

Sgt. Mark Johnson of the Mount Jackson Police Department

Sheriff's Office: Lt. Robert French, Sgt. Dwayne Green, Sgt. Joshua Gum, Deputy Stephen Jarboe, Community Services Deputy Tyler Jobe, Deputy Travis Justice, Lt. Brent Lutz and Deputy Leo Santoyo

Bronze Medal of Valor

Master Deputy Joshua Cook and Deputy Hank Hoover of the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office

Officers Cole Thomas Brandon and James Calvin Horn of the Woodstock Police Department

Lifesaving Awards

Sarah Talley, Lead Communications Officer, Shenandoah County ECC

Lt. Michael Scott Miller, Woodstock Police Department

Sgt. Aaron Lee Bowers, Woodstock Police Department

Ofc. Karl Heinz Taubenberger, Woodstock Police Department

Unit Citations

Edinburg Volunteer Fire Company

Woodstock Volunteer Rescue Squad

Woodstock Fire Department

Shenandoah County Fire and Rescue

Career Provider of the Year

Capt. Summer Ruhling, Shenandoah County Fire and Rescue

Lifetime Achievement Award

Brandi Hall, Public Safety IT Manager, Shenandoah County ECC

Donna Hollar, Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office

Maj. Andrew Scott Proctor (Retired), Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office

Capt. Scotty W. Thompson (Retired), Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office

Lt. Mitchell Vernazza, Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office

Crisis Intervention Team - Dispatcher of the Year

Allie Allar

2023 Outstanding Contribution to EMS Telecommunications

Nisa Seekford

Dispatcher of the Year

Jessica Brigner

Strasburg Law Enforcement Officer of the Year

Capt. John E. Magdinec

Volunteer Firefighter of the Year

Lewis McDonald Sr., Strasburg Fire Dept.






Honoring the men and women who have given the most

to protect and serve the citizens of Shenandoah County.


AWARD CATEGORIES

The awards will be made for acts that occurred between July 1, 2023 thru June 30, 2024.

Dispatcher of the Year

Law Enforcement Officer of the Year

Volunteer Firefighter of the Year

Career Firefighter & EMS Provider of the Year

MERITORIOUS CIVILIAN AWARD: Recognition of everyday citizens for their extraordinary acts of courage or performance of heroic actions in emergency situations.

UNIT CITATION: Recognition of actions not normally involved in the performance of duties, actions of an extraordinary nature, or actions that display outstanding execution of duties by a unit/division/company which demonstrate unusual judgment, zeal, ingenuity and/or bravery.

LIFESAVING AWARD: Recognition of actions not normally involved in the performance of duties, actions of an extraordinary nature, or actions that display outstanding execution of duties by an individual which demonstrate unusual judgment, zeal, ingenuity, bravery and/or personal risk and directly result in the saving of a human life.

CERTIFICATE OF VALOR: Recognition of actions not normally involved in the performance of duties, actions of an extraordinary nature, or actions that display outstanding execution of duties by an individual which demonstrate unusual judgment, zeal, ingenuity, bravery and/or personal risk.

BRONZE MEDAL OF VALOR: Recognition of actions not normally involved in the performance of duties, actions of a heroic nature, or actions that display outstanding execution of duties by an individual which involve personal risk and demonstrate unusual judgment, zeal, bravery and/or ingenuity.

SILVER MEDAL OF VALOR: Recognition of actions not normally involved in the performance of duties, actions of a heroic nature, or actions that display outstanding execution of duties by an individual which involve significant personal risk and heroism and demonstrate unusual judgment, zeal, bravery and/or ingenuity.

GOLD MEDAL OF VALOR: Recognition of actions not normally involved in the performance of duties, actions of a heroic nature, or actions that display outstanding execution of duties by an individual which involve supreme sacrifice or extreme personal risk and heroism and demonstrate unusual judgment, zeal, bravery and/or ingenuity which is clearly above and beyond the call of duty.


AWARD WINNERS

2022

  • Civilian Professional Achievement Award- Accreditation Manager Laura Shelton, Woodstock Police Dept.
  • Volunteer Firefighter of the Year- Chief Aaron Sigler, Woodstock Fire Dept.
  • Career Firefighter & EMS Provider of the Year- Master Firefighter Jon Hammersley, Shenandoah County Fire & Rescue Dept.
  • Dispatcher of the Year- Mary Colt (posthumously)- Emergency Communications Center
  • Strasburg Law Enforcement Officer of the Year- Sgt. Phillip Henry, Strasburg Police Dept.
  • Strasburg Law Enforcement Lifetime Achievement Award- Capt. Jason Ford, Strasburg Police Dept.
  • Woodstock Law Enforcement Officer of the Year- Inv. Matthew Rhodes and Sgt. John Fox, Woodstock Police Dept.
  • Certificate of Valor- Capt. Richard Funkhouser, Shenandoah County Fire & Rescue Dept.
  • Lifesaving Awards
    • Sgt. Derek Smith, Lt. Robert French, DS Hank Hoover, Jr., DS Cody Brill, Inv. Heath Painter; Shenandoah County Sherriff’s Office
    • Firefighter/Paramedic Luke Leonard, Shenandoah County Fire & Rescue Dept.
    • Sgt. Jason Street, Tpr. Michael Albert, Tpr. Michael Painter, Tpr. Cody Mumaw, Tpr. Emily Meyers; Virginia State Police
  • Gold Medal of Valor
    • Master Firefighter Brandon Diehr, Shenandoah County Fire & Rescue Dept.
    • Sgt. Warren Poff, Shenandoah County Sherriff’s Office
  • Meritous Civilian Award - Thomas Batlle, Jr
  • Unit Citations- Woodstock Rescue Squad, Edinburg Fire Company, Woodstock Fire Department, Mt. Jackson Rescue and Fire Department, Shenandoah County Fire & Rescue Department., Harrisonburg Fire Department Technical Rescue Team, Rockingham County Fire Technical Rescue Team, Shenandoah County Sherriff’s Office, Town of Woodstock Public Works Division




MESSAGE FROM THE CHIEFS

"The Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office appreciates the recognition of our public safety professionals by the Shenandoah County Chamber of Commerce, its members, and the Valor Award Program sponsors.  The staff and I are grateful to honor those receiving these acknowledgments.  We know that our community values the service of all of our first responders as they protect and serve each day."  Sheriff Timothy C. Carter

"Our first responders spend each and every workday putting their lives on the line to ensure that others remain safe. Being recognized through the Valor Awards by the citizens we protect is the highest compliment any first responder can receive."   Fire Chief Tim Williams

"Communications Officers are the calming voice on the other end of the phone and radio, often forgotten, answering the 911 lines, keeping the mother calm while giving pre-arrival instructions, sending law enforcement for the prowler, or ensuring everyone is out of the burning building.  Being included  in this reception with our fellow first responders is humbling, yet one of the highest honors bestowed upon us."   Emergency Communications Center Director Mellanie Shipe

"The Woodstock Police Department is extremely grateful to the Shenandoah County Chamber of Commerce and the business community who support our public safety professionals. This collaborative relationship is a critical component to our ability to serve the needs of the residents and visitors to our wonderful community.” Chief Eric Reiley, Woodstock Police Department

“I’m truly proud and honored to stand together with our community to recognize all the first responder men and women who put their lives on the line for each of us daily. These brave individuals go above and beyond the call of duty to serve the community. It is with great pleasure to be part of the Valor Awards Program to celebrate each of them.”  Chief Wayne Sager, Strasburg Police Department





CONTACTS

director@shenandoahcountychamber.com
540-459-2542
103 South Main Street
Woodstock, VA 22664

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