Support Person of the Year Award – 2016
To: Jefferson County Chiefs & Sheriff Association
Date: December 16, 2016
Ref: Support Person of the Year Award – 2016
I am grateful for the opportunity to write this letter of nomination for Watertown Police Department "part-time" employee Dawn Learned. Ms. Learned currently serves in a variety of roles within the Watertown PD and neighboring law enforcement agencies.
Ms. Learned’s pathway into policing began in the fall of 2009 when she participated in the Watertown Citizens Police Academy. Upon completing the academy she joined the Watertown Police Auxiliary on June 9, 2010. The Police Auxiliary is made up of non-sworn uniformed employees that augment our sworn officers in a variety of roles to include special events such as parades, sporting events and festivals. Their service has expanded to patrolling city parks; locking public bathrooms and will soon further expand to include authority to issue municipal citations.
Captain Learned quickly established herself as a first-rate Auxiliary Officer and was promoted to Auxiliary Sergeant on March 9, 2011 and Auxiliary Captain on January 1,
2014. In her capacity as Captain she supervises and schedules twelve Auxiliary Officers for over twenty annual special events. She also participants in the hiring process for new auxiliary officers and conducts field training for the recruits. She devotes countless hours of her own time scheduling and assigning Auxiliary Officers to events which occur almost weekly and sometimes with little notice.
In June of 2010, Ms. Learned joined The Jefferson County Emergency Communications (JCEC) and is known as “J82”. JCEC’s primary mission is to assist law enforcement with traffic and crowd control at serious accidents and large fires. They secure crime scenes and search for missing persons when requested to do so. JCEC also provides volunteers at parades, festivals, walk / run events and community celebrations anywhere in the county.
Ms. Learned was hired full time as a Telecommunicator for the Dodge County Sheriffs Office on October 16, 2012. She is a highly skilled Sheriffs Office employee who also represents her agency as a member of the Dodge County Honor Guard.
In 2012, the Watertown Police Department funded part-time Telecommunicator positions. The positions were created to reduce over-time and allow for full time workers to take vacation time or report for military obligations. Ms. Learned was hired as a part-time Telecommunicator and frequently signs up for open shifts in the Watertown Communications Center. She came to the position highly skilled and immediately filled a void for an overworked Comm. Center.
The department also had a desperate need for substitute crossing guards. The city has nine crossing guard locations that parents and small children depend on in the morning and afternoon each school day. It seems weekly substitutes are needed to cover a crossing.
Ms. Learned stepped up and helps as a substitute crossing guard as well! Ms. Learned can work any of the crossings and is always responsive to phone calls, text messages or e-mails.
In addition, Ms. Learned is the head of her Watertown Neighborhood Watch program, keeping her neighbors informed of local crime-trends and maintaining open communications with our police department. Dawn and her husband Terry are the parents of Jordan age 20, Justin age 15 and Lauren age 13. Their son Jordan Learned is an active member of the Auxiliary Officer program as well.
I wholeheartedly recommend Dawn Learned for this recognition. She is a behind the scenes professional that never seeks credit, does her job to the best of her ability, and is a solid role model for all of us in public service. Ms. Learned’s sense of citizenship extends far beyond Watertown and includes both Jefferson and Dodge County’s. She is an extraordinary skilled individual who continually renders noteworthy work in a variety of capacity’s to the Dodge County Sheriff, Jefferson County Sheriff, Watertown Police and hence our community as a whole.
Chief Timothy Roets
History of Watertown, Wisconsin