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'Sheriff of the Year' Coming to Prescott

14 February 2011  
RWOP meeting will feature Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu.

babeauPaul Babeu is considered one of the toughest sheriffs in the U.S. and plans to talk about his stance on illegal immigration and national security as the featured speaker at this month’s Republican Women of Prescott meeting at 11:30 a.m. tomorrow at Prescott Resort.

The Pinal County Sheriff was recently named Sheriff of the Year by the National Sheriff’s Association and is serving a second term as the president of the Arizona Sheriff’s Association. The Sheriff’s Association is comprised of the elected sheriffs of all 15 Arizona counties.
Babeu won his first term in a landslide election victory in 2008 over the incumbent sheriff.

He earned statewide and national attention with his outspoken stances against photo-enforcement cameras and illegal immigration. He is Arizona’s youngest sheriff and leads the third largest sheriff’s office in the state.

During this past year, Sheriff Babeu retired from the Arizona Army National Guard. During his tenure, he served a tour in Iraq and spent 16 months deployed in Arizona as a Commander with Operation Jump Start (OJS), Southwest Border Mission.

Sheriff Babeu served 20 years in the Army National Guard, where he started service as an enlisted Private/E-2 and ended it as an officer with the rank of Major.

Sheriff Babeu’s education includes an Associate Degree in Law Enforcement, Bachelor’s Degree in History/Political Science, and a Master of Public Administration, Suma Cum Laude. He is a member of numerous military, civic, and business groups.

Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever said, “Paul is known nationally for his strong stand against illegal immigration and the drug cartels who have invaded our state. He stands for integrity within the office of sheriff and has demonstrated true professionalism while representing that office as well as the Arizona Sheriff’s Association.”

Babeu was selected last month as the recipient of the 2011 Ferris E. Lucas Award for Sheriff of the Year, which will be presented to him at the Opening General Session Sunday, June 19, at NSA’s Annual Conference in St. Louis, Missouri.

NSA established the Ferris E. Lucas award in 1995 “to recognize an outstanding sheriff of the year for contributions made to improve the office of sheriff on the local, state, and national levels, and for involvement in the community above and beyond the responsibilities required.”

The award is given in memory of Ferris E. Lucas, NSA Past President (1944-46) and executive director (1964-82), who completed 50 years of distinguished service and leadership in law enforcement.

In 2008, Sheriff Paul Babeu won his first term in a landslide election victory over the incumbent sheriff. Since elected as Pinal County Sheriff, Babeu has become one of the most progressive sheriffs in the nation.

He has earned both statewide and national attention for his strong stance against illegal immigration. And his stance and actions against those responsible for drug and human trafficking have earned him the distinction as one of “America’s Toughest Sheriffs on Illegal Immigration.”

Under Sheriff Babeu’s direction, the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office has acquired both innovative equipment and technology through $7,000,000 in grant funding.

Citizens of Pinal County used to have to wait up to 15 minutes for a deputy to respond but that response time has now been cut in half.

Sheriff Babeu is a strong proponent of regional efforts to improve public safety. The approach has allowed all agencies within Pinal County to pool their resources and work together, saving money and improving service. Thanks to Sheriff Babeu, Pinal County now has a Regional SWAT, Traffic and Narcotics Task Force.

He also organized a “Citizens on Patrol” program and a “Citizen Alert Network” that has brought the community forward and more active with the sheriff’s office.

Babeu is an Advisory Board Member for the National Organization for Victim’s Assistance. He has become a national spokesman on border crimes, illegal immigration and the need to secure the U.S./Mexico border.

He also worked on developing the “10 Point Border Security Plan” with Senators John McCain and Jon Kyl.

Cost to attend tomorrow’s RWOP luncheon is $15, which includes lunch choices of Chicken Coq au Vin with wild mushrooms, pearl onions, apple wood smoked bacon and fresh herbs served in puff pastry or Coq au Vin with firm tofu, mushrooms, onions and herbs wrapped in puff pastry.

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Lauren Millette