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Officer Burkitt named HPD Officer of the Year

Portrait of Police Department Employee Haynes and Officer Burkitt

Several Hilliard Division of Police employees were recently recognized for their exceptional efforts serving the City of Hilliard.

Officer Ron Burkitt and Administrative Assistant Linda Haynes were named the 2021 Employees of the Year. They were nominated for the awards by their co-workers.

Officer Burkitt has been a member of the Division for more than 31 years. He has served the department in a variety of roles, including patrol officer and school resource officer, and was a founding member of the bicycle unit.

“Officer Burkitt handled multiple mental health calls in 2021 — all with positive outcomes,” said Chief of Police Eric Grile, reading from nominations. “Ron brings a great attitude to work every day, does the job to the best of his ability, and has a little fun in the process.”

Burkitt, along with Sgt. Suzy Muraco, was also presented with a Life-Saving Award. The two responded to a residence where a man was in cardiac arrest and performed CPR. Medics credited the duo’s immediate actions with saving the man’s life.

Haynes, who retired in October 2021 after more than 23 years of service to the City of Hilliard, was named the Civilian Employee of the Year.

“Linda was always helpful. Every time I asked something from her, she went above and beyond to fulfill the request,” a nomination form stated.

Additionally, Life-Saving Awards were presented to Officers Matt Braden and Steven Persinger for their actions to resuscitate an infant who had been exposed to fentanyl, and to Officer Josh Howard for his off-duty efforts rescuing a man suffering a medical crisis in the pool at the Hilliard Family Aquatic Center.

Officer Ryan Turner was presented with a Commendation Award for his efforts to replace a bicycle stolen from a Hilliard resident. Support Services Supervisor Natalie Riley received the Chief’s Award for her work transitioning the Division to a new records management system. 

Achievement Awards were presented to staff for various incidents, ranging from investigating a federal kidnapping case, seizing substantial amounts of deadly drugs, responding to mental health crises to ensure safe outcomes, and tracking down vehicle theft suspects.

Those recognized were: Officer Josh Howard, Officer Hunter Schweickart and K9 Max, Officer Glenn Rogers, Officer Shane O’Connor, Officer Jordan Lyle, Officer Andy Anderson, Sgt. Justin Cramer, Detective Austin Vogelsang, Detective Johnathon Hitchings, Detective Vanessa Hemminger, Officer Brandon Long, Officer Dustin Gigandet, Officer Kyle Bright, Officer Matt Braden and K9 Kane, Officer Marqel Watkins, Officer Michael Taggart, Officer Andrew Murry, Officer Matt Hayes, Officer Greg Toczek, Officer Casey McManaway, Officer Quinn Izar, Detective Kristen Winter, Lt. Ron Clark, Sgt. Suzy Muraco, Sgt. Jared Zellers, and Detective Deb Mullin.

The event was sponsored by BMW Financial Services.

Officer Burkitt
Administration Assistant Linda Haynes
Support Services Supervisor Natalie Riley

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