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2003 COY Matthew Morgan
RUO Matthew Morgan, Baraga Maximum Correctional Facility, has been selected by the State Standards Committee of the Michigan Correctional Officers’ Training Council as the 2003 Michigan Officer of the Year.
RUO Morgan was one of five finalists chosen for the honor from candidates nominated from each institution including SAI and from each region of the Field Operations Administration. The other four finalists included: Chad Cunningham, Boyer Road Correctional Facility; Carol Eisman, Camp Cusino; Timothy McMillion, Camp Lehman and Gavin Piepkow, Southern Michigan Correctional Facility.
Candidates are judged on the basis of their work ethic, MDOC policy compliance, communications skills and professionalism. Each must provide a positive role model and sound judgment in emergency situations.
The finalists are selected by a committee of former officers of the year, an MCO representative, a custody supervisor and a training representative. Following are some excerpts from the five finalists’ application forms.
Officer of the Year Matthew Morgan has been commended for taking ideas and turning them into action plans. He assisted the administration at the facility in developing a safer way to unlock prisoners during mass movement in an effort to prevent attacks. RUO Morgan has received a DOC Valor Award and has often aided prisoners and offered assistance in the community.
Gavin Piepkow, Southern Michigan Correctional Facility, has been described by his superiors as exemplifying the concepts of professionalism and teamwork. He was instrumental in establishing the “Work Fit” program for DOC employees in the Jackson area. RUO Piepkow helped control and end a hostage situation involving a nurse at Duane L. Waters Hospital and prevented a second situation when a prisoner attempted to pull a female CO into his room. Through RUO Piepkow’s physical intervention, staff was not seriously injured in either incident.
Chad Cunningham, Boyer Road Correctional Facility, is a respected seven-year DOC veteran. Officer Cunningham was vital in developing a system of code phrases designed to conceal the Alert Response Vehicles movement from the prisoner population. He holds current department qualifications on all weapons, making it very convenient for his supervisors to place him into any position at a moment’s notice, including prisoner transportation.
Carol Eiseman, Camp Cusino, has been called an excellent role model for everyone. RUO Eiseman is a highly organized individual. She works with the facility’s Diversity Committee and has been selected as Captain for the 2003 Torch Run. She demonstrates a positive work ethic and uses sound judgment in her decision making.
Timothy McMillion, Camp Lehman, goes above and beyond his normal duties and responsibilities on a regular basis. He is a seasoned professional who maintains an optimistic outlook when faced with difficulties. RUO McMillion has improved and implemented counseling programs for the prisoners and assisted in the update and rewrite of the prisoner guide book. Over 1000 prisoners have completed his “Anger Management” program.
“These five finalists are exemplary members of a profession that requires commitment, courage and strength,” said DOC Director William S. Overton. “Our fine corrections officers are not praised enough for their hard work. Congratulations RUO Morgan and thank you for your outstanding efforts.”
Michigan Department of Corrections, Jan. 23, 2003
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