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Hillsboro Police Department's citizen's academy gave one reader a new reason to appreciate the city.

Bill Swanson is a Hillsboro resident.


My wife and I recently participated in the Hillsboro Police Citizens Academy. The course, limited to about 40 people, is offered once a year and covers the entire scope of operations within the Hillsboro Police Department. We were exposed to not only the patrol officers we see daily on our streets and their responsibility, but far more.

I was amazed at just how much effort and planning it takes to keep our police department the model agency it is. The Hillsboro Police Department is held in great regard both statewide and nationally! This, I can tell you, is no accident as the officers are not only extremely versed in their jobs, they hold each other to very high standards.

There are a lot of moving parts involved in running the Hillsboro Police Department. The support personnel are a huge factor, and really add to the professional department we all enjoy in Hillsboro.

From the budget process, constant training, records division, criminal investigation division, the district attorney's office, and much more. We were given a (hands-on) look at all of it, and plenty of time to ask questions that I felt were all answered honestly and with no deception whatsoever.

My takeaway from the 12-week course is not exactly what we anticipated, far from it. The success of HPD is a direct result of the quality and sense of community our officers and support staff display on a daily basis. Every officer and support staff member who presented to the class was clear and concise and helped us understand just how complex the police department operations are. It was always "us," never "me or I."

First and foremost, the support of our entire community is critical to the success of HPD. It makes attracting new quality candidates and retaining seasoned officers a reality, not enjoyed by some other agencies.

You don't have to look very far to find turmoil between elected decision making officials and police departments. Somehow using emergency service providers as a pawn in a political power play scares me, and should scare all of us. A big thanks to Mayor Steve Callaway, and the Hillsboro City Council for being supportive and voicing their support for our Police and emergency responders. Sooner or later every one of us will need some form of emergency response, and probably in a big hurry!

I am thankful knowing the responders we have are well trained, professional, and equipped to serve us regardless of who we are, what color we are, or language we speak, how we worship, or which side of the political aisle we sit. Just one more great reason we call Hillsboro home.


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