HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The 200 Club presented the following awards at the Waialae Country Club on Wednesday morning:
2015 Police Officer of the Year – Officer Ross Borges, District 6 (Waikiki)
Officer Borges has already made a name for himself in the three years he's been in the HPD. In a 12-month period, Officer Borges made 424 arrests, issued 833 citations, and generated 651 reports. He can be constantly heard on the police radio responding to cases, assisting fellow officers, and making sure his beat partners are safe. Officer Borges' beat includes the Waikiki Beach pavilions, where he issued more than 400 citations for violations of park closure laws, drinking in public, and illegal camping. His efforts have helped to make Waikiki safer and more enjoyable for residents and tourists.
2015 Reserve Officer of the Year – Reserve Officer Howard Meechan, Community Affairs Division
A reserve officer since 1988, Reserve Officer Meechan donated 721 volunteer hours to the HPD in 2014. He worked 28 to 92 hours per month, far surpassing the required 20 hours per month. Whether he's monitoring "hot spots" for car break-ins or directing traffic for holiday parades, Reserve Officer Meechan has never missed an assignment. He is considered the voice of the Reserve Officers corps and has been the president of the Keys and Whistles for the past 11 years. When he's not working for the HPD, you'll find him at Meechan Enterprises, where he is the owner, operator, and roofing inspector.
2015 Police Parent of the Year – Lieutenant Phillip Johnson, Narcotics/Vice Division
Lieutenant Johnson is a 24-year veteran and has two daughters, ages 12 and 16. After his wife passed away from a long illness in 2014, he became their primary caretaker, cheerleader, chauffeur, and all-around pillar of support. Both daughters are honor roll students at Mid Pacific Institute, and Lt. Johnson spends much of his time driving them to acting and dance classes and rehearsals. Despite their hectic schedules, the three still find time for surfing, paddle boarding, and hiking.
2015 Civilian Employee of the Year – Ms. Maria Theresa Comer, Finance Division
Ms. Comer has worked as an Accountant 3 at the HPD since 2013. In 2014, an audit of the Hawaii High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) revealed the need to revamp many of the office's financial procedures. Ms. Comer spent countless hours working with auditors, the agency's new director, and the executive assistant to correct deficiencies. She met with HPD staff, federal officials, and others to develop procedures to track funds, inventory, and overtime in order to ensure compliance with federal standards. Because of staff turnover, Ms. Comer had to train two different financial managers and help balance the HIDTA budget. She did this while also completing her normal duties.
2015 Citizenship Award – Ms. Karen Kahikina, Hawaii Department of Transportation (DOT)
Ms. Kahikina is the DOT's highway safety specialist and also the volunteer coordinator for Hawaii's Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) and Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE) programs. Thanks to Ms. Kahikina's dedication, nearly 150 HPD officers have been trained to detect and deter impaired drivers at no cost to the department. Ms. Kahikina coordinated certification and recertification sessions for all four counties, a daunting task that required bringing in experts from the mainland and other countries. She was also instrumental in modifying a federal grant so that the HPD could purchase a scanning station that creates 3-D diagrams of crash scenes.
The 200 Club is an organization comprised of 200 businesses and community leaders who support the HPD and the Honolulu Fire Department (HFD), especially during times of personal crisis.