FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE10-36
April 15, 2010
Farrell Sklerov/Mercedes Padilla (718) 595-6600
25 New Environmental Police Officers Are Sworn In
DEP Police Critical to Protecting New York City’s Watershed and Water Infrastructure
Environmental Protection Commissioner Cas Holloway today presided over a graduation ceremony for 25 Environmental Police Officers (EPOs) from DEP's Environmental Police Academy. The academy, launched in 2002, is the first-of-its-kind in the nation to provide training, experience and concentrated course work in advanced environmental laws. The new EPOs will be immediately deployed to protect New York City's water supply system and will have the responsibility to protect the City's 2,000 square miles of watershed land and infrastructure. This class brings the police force to 189 sworn members. The ceremony took place at the Ulster Performing Arts Center in Kingston.
"Environmental Police Officers are on the front lines protecting the water supply system for half of New York State, roughly nine million people," said Environmental Protection Commissioner Holloway. "Under Mayor Bloomberg's leadership, we have invested billions of dollars in the water supply system, and the officers sworn in today, along with their colleagues already on the force, take on the duty to protect this irreplaceable resource. Each graduate went through a rigorous 30-week training course to learn the most up-to-date laws on terrorism and the environment. Their expertise, commitment and dedication to protecting our water supply make us all proud."
"I want to commend these 25 individuals for taking on the tremendous task and responsibility of protecting our vast water supply system," said Council Member Peter F. Vallone Jr., Chair of the Public Safety Committee. "When it comes to guarding our most important natural resource — New York City deserves the best."
The 25 graduates sworn in as officers today bring unique backgrounds and experiences that will add to the professionalism and preparedness of the DEP Police. Several EPOs have experience in the military, law enforcement, and emergency response. Matthew Kruger, of Ulster, served in the United States Army in Operation Noble Eagle and Iraqi Freedom; Thomas Terminelle, of Queens, volunteered in the NYPD Auxiliary Police as a Sergeant in the 100th Precinct in Queens; Christopher Carr, of Ulster, worked as a patrolman for the Village of Montgomery Police Department; and Jaime Vasquez, of Queens, worked for the NYPD Traffic Enforcement Division.
The complete list of graduates and their home counties:
Jerome Boswell, of Queens; Robert Burke, of Rockland; Christopher Carr, of Ulster; Rhamsis Diaz, of Orange; Daniel Dipaolo, of Rockland; Edward Dolenk, of Dutchess; Brian Einsfeld, of Richmond; David Gabriec, of Orange; Kevin Greany, of Orange; Christopher Hansen, of Westchester; Scott Kanvin, of Ulster; Sean Kinane, of Putnam; Matthew Kruger, of Ulster; James Lukacs, of Dutchess; Joel Martinez, of The Bronx; Richard Mugge, of Ulster; Jesse Murphy, of Ulster; Joseph Novak, of Putnam; Paul Perpall, of Rockland; Justin Romer, of Orange; Anthony Ruberto, of Orange; Jesse Ryan, of Westchester; Darius Tavernier, of Richmond; Thomas Terminelle, of Queens; and Jaime Vasquez, of Queens.
The graduating class named EPO Matthew Kruger as the class leader and EPO Kevin Greany, EPO Joel Martinez and EPO Anthony Ruberto as Squad Leaders. During the graduation ceremony several EPOs were given awards for outstanding performance during the training. EPO Anthony Ruberto received the Academic Proficiency Award; EPO Sean Kinane received the Physical Fitness Award; EPO Edward Dolenk Jr. received the Firearms Proficiency Award; and EPO Joseph Novak received the Best Overall Officer Award.
Graduates successfully completed a total of 30 weeks of instruction in which they underwent intense training in counterterrorism, the environment, police science, and the use of firearms and defensive tactics. In addition, recruits completed courses in environmental conservation law. DEP Police patrol approximately 2,000 square miles in nine counties on both sides of the Hudson River.
DEP manages the City's water supply, providing more than 1 billion gallons of water each day to more than 9 million residents, including 8 million in New York City, and residents of Ulster, Orange, Putnam and Westchester counties. Approximately 1,000 DEP employees live and work in the watershed communities as scientists, engineers, surveyors, administrative professionals, and other professions.