April 17, 2002
Corrections Officers are Presented Awards
NIAGARA FALLS - Corrections Officers Daniel Greenwald and Kevin Sherman received top honors Friday for their actions in handling critical situations at the Niagara County Jail over the past two years.
Greenwald was cited for stopping an inmate's assault on another officer. Sherman was recognized for using his emergency medical skills to help two inmates in separate medical emergencies.
They were among 22 officers recognized for their outstanding work at the Niagara County Deputy Sheriffs Association Awards Banquet, which is held every two years. The union represents 133 corrections officers and dispatchers.
Greenwald was named Officer of the Year for 2000 for stopping an inmate from attacking Corrections Officer Sheri Jacobs on Oct. 12, 2000, union President William Schiavitti said.
"They were escorting a prisoner back to his cell on the third floor of Building 1 when he suddenly became violent and struck Greenwald in the face with his fist. Then he went after Jacobs. As he started to attack her, Greenwald recovered and brought him under control," Schiavitti said.
Greenwald's actions prevented the inmate from seriously injuring Jacobs, who suffered only minor bumps and bruises, he said.
Sheriff Thomas A. Beilein gave Corrections Officer Kevin Sherman the Sheriff's Distinguished Service Award for using his emergency medical training to aid and possibly save the lives of two inmates in unrelated incidents, Schiavitti said.
On. Oct. 6, 2001, Sherman came to the aid of an inmate who attempted suicide by jumping off the new jail's second floor mezzanine and landing on the first floor.
A certified emergency medical technician, Sherman quickly assessed the inmate's injuries, placed a cervical collar on him and treated him for various injuries, including slash wounds to his wrist, until an ambulance crew arrived.
"He took care of the inmate and took steps to make sure he didn't suffer further (and more serious) injuries after he hit the floor," Schiavitti said.
On Nov. 8, 2001, Sherman fond an inmate "unconscious and unresponsive" and "realized the man had gone into diabetic shock," Schiavitti said. "He administered glucose to the inmate. Due to his response, the man fully recovered."
Corrections Officer Carl Penders, an 18-year veteran, received the Officer of the Year Award for 2001 for his performance of two jobs and his ability to fill in at almost any position at the jail, as well as sharing his knowledge of handling operations and situations with younger officers.
And while his award was not specifically linked to a life-and-death situation, Schiavitti said union officials felt Panders deserved the award for carrying such a heavy load and making things easier for the jail staff and administration. For one thing, he said, Panders not only served as acting sergeant on the midnight shift in 2001, but was the department's inmate processing officer, responsible for input and maintainance of records in the jail's computer system for all inmates, Schiavitti said.
Beilein also gave Chief Deputy Peter Clark a Sheriff's Distinguished Service Award. Responsible for jail operations since 1994, Clark was credited by the sheriff with improving and modernizing jail operations. Schiavitti said Clark played a major role in improving everything from communications and computerization at the jail to training personnel and raising jail staff moral.
In other awards:
The Francis Polewicz III Memorial Award for overall exceptional performance of duty went to Corrections Officer Andrew Hoeltz for 2000 and to Corrections Officer Steven Woock for 2001.
Former Incarcerated Youth Educator Barbara Converso received the Chaplin Russell Isler Award for her work at the jail.
Meritorious Service Awards went to Corrections Officers David Eaton and Katherine Rucci.
Sheriff's Excellence Awards were given to Corrections Officers Emmanuel Clark, Aaron Livergood and Jason Kinney.
Departmental citations went to dispatcher Robin Zastro and Corrections Officers Rick Cirrito, Robert Booth, Derrick Brevard, Kirk Kingsbury, Tim Blackley, Jim Till, Anthony Suess, Mike Little and Richard Cindrich.