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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:September 15, 2000


John R. Hagerty, NJSP
(609) 882-2000 x6515

Lt. Wendy Galloway, NJSP
(609) 882-2000 x6516


Gov. Whitman, A.G. Farmer, Col. Dunbar & State Officials
Present Commendations To Over 100 Troopers, Police Officers & Professional Staff

Detailed listing of the State Police awardees and a description of their actions in PDF Format (64kb)
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       Trenton - Along with a "job well done," Governor Christie Whitman today offered thank you's from the people of New Jersey to the men and women of the New Jersey State Police and their families during a formal commendation/award ceremony held at the Trenton War Memorial.

       "Today's awards recognize heroism in many forms, from daring underwater rescues to dogged detective work to saving a baby's life during an emergency delivery," Governor Whitman said. "Whatever the circumstances, these awards recognize that in the thick of chaos, you showed clear thinking, lightning fast action and a selfless disregard for your own personal safety.

       "I am proud to be able to thank you on behalf of the people of New Jersey," she said. "I am also enormously proud of the job our State Police and law enforcement community does every day. Thanks to you and your colleagues, and the heroism you demonstrate daily, New Jersey is the safest it has been in a generation."

        Joining the Governor in recognizing the 100 state troopers, Division of State Police professional staff and fellow police officers and emergency personnel for their actions above and beyond the call to duty were Attorney General John J. Farmer, Jr., Colonel Carson J. Dunbar, Jr., Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police, and numerous other top state law enforcement and government officials.

       The state officials joined with the troopers and their families at the first public awards ceremony geared to honor state troopers, the professional employees of the Division of State Police and law enforcement personnel from other New Jersey police and emergency response agencies, for their selfless acts of heroism and courage during the performance of their daily responsibilities.

        The selected troopers, state police professional staff and representatives from fellow law enforcement agencies were recognized for individual deeds, cooperative law enforcement investigations and response and team leadership actions that include heroism, selfless acts of bravery, life-saving medical assistance response, the provision of aid and comfort at accident and disaster scenes, community service and volunteerism, professional achievements, and overall public response over and above required actions.

        "Each day, police officers report to a job in which they may be called on to put their personal safety at risk to help others. And they do so without hesitation," said Attorney General Farmer.

        "To members of the State Police being honored here today, and to the entire State Police family: the conduct we recognize today makes one thing clear. As your organization undergoes significant and, I believe, ultimately positive change, one thing that hasn't changed is your commitment to professionalism, public service and valor," Farmer said.

      The State Police awards include:

  • Distinguished Service Medal - Awarded for an act of heroism, courage or self-sacrifice involving a high degree of risk to life;

  • Meritorious Service Medal - Awarded for an act of diligence and perseverance such as crime prevention, the protection of life and/or property, apprehension of a criminal suspect or when the deed reflects credit to the trooper and/or the Division of State Police;

  • Certificate of Commendation - Awarded when a single commendable and superior service is rendered in the line of duty above and beyond that which would be expected of professional responsibility or duty assignment;

  • Letter of Commendation - Awarded for exceptional service in the line of duty;

  • Letter of Recognition - Awarded for performance above and beyond the normal course of duties;

  • New Jersey State Police Law Enforcement Valor Award - Awarded to law enforcement officers for their assistance to the New Jersey State Police and who display an act of heroism that involves a high degree of risk to life;

  • New Jersey State Police Law Enforcement Commendation Award - Awarded to law enforcement officers for their assistance to the New Jersey State Police for superior performance of duty involving a single outstanding achievement in the accomplishment of Division goals and/or mission.

        In addition to recognizing and honoring the troopers and professional staff of the Division of State Police, Col. Dunbar also announced the promotion of Major Barry W. Roberson and Major Vincent J. Modarelli to the rank of Lt. Colonel and to the position of Deputy Superintendent for Operations and Deputy Superintendent for Investigations respectively.

        Lt. Col. Modarelli, 49, of Burlington County, has been a New Jersey State Trooper since 1973, serving as a uniformed trooper, undercover detective, supervisor, and staff officer. Regardless of assignment, LTC Modarelli has maintained a commitment to combating the use of illegal drugs - not just through enforcement efforts, but through education and awareness programs geared to New Jersey's young people.

        As a detective, LTC Modarelli was twice decorated for his efforts as an undercover narcotics operative. As a Lieutenant, he established an anti-drug enforcement effort that became a model for multi-agency, urban anti-drug operations. And, as a Captain, he developed and implemented a major organizational restructuring that increased illicit drug, property, and currency confiscations by tens of millions of dollars without the expenditure of additional resources.

        In his role as President of the New Jersey Narcotic Enforcement Officers Association, LTC Modarelli continued to foster cooperative alliances between the state's law enforcement and public sector agencies by focusing on the development of a heightened law enforcement/prevention-rehabilitation/community alliance and partnership effort geared to reduce illegal drug abuse in New Jersey's communities and neighborhoods.

        Over the past five years, LTC Modarelli has led an extensive effort to develop and modernize the state's regional forensic laboratories, the drug and alcohol testing instrumentation, and the state's DNA Program. As Deputy Superintendent for Investigations, LTC Modarelli maintains responsibility of supervising the activities of 700 investigative, scientific, and administrative personnel in the Investigations, Intelligence and Special & Technical Services Sections.

        Lt. Col. Roberson, 52, of Medford, has been a state trooper since 1969, serving as a uniformed trooper at various stations in Troops A and C, detective assignments in the Narcotics Bureau, Auto Theft Unit and the Intelligence Bureau, operations officer at the State Police Training Academy at Fort Dix, supervisor and staff officer.

        Additionally, LTC Roberson served as the Public Information Officer for the Division of State Police, as Deputy Troop Commander for Troop A and C , and as Troop Commander for Troop A and D. More recently, Roberson maintained responsibility for oversight of the State Police budget and administrative process as supervisor of the Administration Section.

        LTC Roberson serves as the Vice-Chair of the New Jersey State Investment Council and as a trustee of the State Police Retirement System of New Jersey. He is also the Secretary/Treasurer of the Division of State and Provincial Police, International Association of Chiefs of Police and is currently the Vice-President of the New Jersey Chapter of the F.B.I. National Academy Association.

        As Deputy Superintendent of Operations, LTC Roberson is a principal staff advisor to the Superintendent and serves as the acting Chief of Staff in his absence. LTC Roberson is responsible for directing and coordinating the personnel and functions of the Field Operations, Administration, Records and Identification, Division Staff, and Emergency Management Sections. There are 2,142 enlisted and 926 civilian employees under his direction.

       A detailed listing of the State Police awardees and a description of their actions can be obtained by logging-on to the State Police Web Page at www.njsp.org

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