2018-03-29 / Front Page

Sheriff Stern graduates from FBI National Academy


TEN WEEKS OF TRAINING Sheriff Ed Stern graduated from the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy Program March 16 in Quantico, VA. The National Academy Program is a 10-week session that provides students with training in advanced communication, leadership and fitness training. The program was attended by both men and women from 48 states, the District of Columbia, 18 international countries, five military organiza­tions and five federal civilian organizations. Stern said what is unique about the program is that it is free and did not cost Roscommon County taxpayers anything. (Photo by Krista Tacey-Cater) TEN WEEKS OF TRAINING Sheriff Ed Stern graduated from the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy Program March 16 in Quantico, VA. The National Academy Program is a 10-week session that provides students with training in advanced communication, leadership and fitness training. The program was attended by both men and women from 48 states, the District of Columbia, 18 international countries, five military organiza­tions and five federal civilian organizations. Stern said what is unique about the program is that it is free and did not cost Roscommon County taxpayers anything. (Photo by Krista Tacey-Cater) Tested physically, mentally and academically for 10 weeks, Roscommon County Sheriff Ed Stern is now an alum­nus of the highly-selective Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy, which he graduated from March 16 at the FBI Training Academy in Quantico, VA.

The 271st Session of the FBI National Academy, like all others, is designed for law enforcement personnel who serve in executive-level positions. Many of the participants have an average of 21 years of law enforcement experience and have proven records as professionals within their home agencies. Stern is one of the 223 law enforcement members who gradu­ated from the latest session in a program that has had 50,808 graduates since 1972, when the FBI National Academy first began.


IN THE CLASSROOM While attending the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy Program, Sheriff Ed Stern took six college-level courses including fit­ness management and law enforcement, essentials for law enforcement leaders, contemporary issues for law enforcement, behavioral science for law enforcement, contemporary issues in policing and media rela­tions and drugs in society and contemporary drug enforcement strate­gies. As part of the classes, Stern was required to give presentations that included real case studies that occurred in Roscommon County. IN THE CLASSROOM While attending the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Academy Program, Sheriff Ed Stern took six college-level courses including fit­ness management and law enforcement, essentials for law enforcement leaders, contemporary issues for law enforcement, behavioral science for law enforcement, contemporary issues in policing and media rela­tions and drugs in society and contemporary drug enforcement strate­gies. As part of the classes, Stern was required to give presentations that included real case studies that occurred in Roscommon County. The program, which focuses on academic excellence, communication, leadership development and fitness training, provided Stern with what he said are the skills to make him a more effective leader and provided him with knowledge to better serve his community.


FAMILY SUPPORT Sheriff Ed Stern, who graduated from the Federal Bureau of Investiga­tion National Academy Program March 16, said he is thankful for the support his wife, Angie, son, Gabe, and daughter, Reanna, provided him while he was away at the 10-week training, which took place in Quan­tico, VA. Both Angie and Reanna were able to attend the graduation held at the FBI Training Academy, however, Stern said his son was unable to attend because he is away at college. Stern said he is also grateful for the support of the Roscommon County community and the staff of the Roscommon County Sheriff’s Office. (Courtesy photos) FAMILY SUPPORT Sheriff Ed Stern, who graduated from the Federal Bureau of Investiga­tion National Academy Program March 16, said he is thankful for the support his wife, Angie, son, Gabe, and daughter, Reanna, provided him while he was away at the 10-week training, which took place in Quan­tico, VA. Both Angie and Reanna were able to attend the graduation held at the FBI Training Academy, however, Stern said his son was unable to attend because he is away at college. Stern said he is also grateful for the support of the Roscommon County community and the staff of the Roscommon County Sheriff’s Office. (Courtesy photos) In order to be considered for the FBI National Academy, students must pass an extensive FBI background check, meet certain requirements and be nominated by the head of a police organization.


ONE OF 223 GRADUATES Sheriff Ed Stern (right) was one of 223 law enforcement personnel to graduate March 16 from the Federal Bu­reau of Investigation National Academy Program. Stern received his diploma from FBI Director Christopher Wray (left), who was the principal speaker at the ceremony. This was the 271st session of the FBI National Academy, which has had a total of 50,808 graduates since it began in 1972. ONE OF 223 GRADUATES Sheriff Ed Stern (right) was one of 223 law enforcement personnel to graduate March 16 from the Federal Bu­reau of Investigation National Academy Program. Stern received his diploma from FBI Director Christopher Wray (left), who was the principal speaker at the ceremony. This was the 271st session of the FBI National Academy, which has had a total of 50,808 graduates since it began in 1972. Stern was nominated by former Roscommon County Sheriff Randy Stevenson in 2012, but Stevenson said because there are only so many slots available for each session and because it is so selective it took some time before Stern was able to take part in the training.

Stevenson, who took a condensed one-week version of a similar training, said Stern being able to take part in the FBI Training Academy is valuable to the Roscommon County Sheriff’s Office because Stern was able to learn about the most up-to-date law enforcement technology, network with other “high-ranking officials” and make connections to re­sources that will be able to help the RCSO in the future.

He added that with the training Stern will be able to lead his team more effectively from a leadership standpoint. Stevenson said that because Stern took the training earlier in his career as sheriff the information he learned will serve him long into his career.

“I think this is probably the greatest training so far in his career,” Stevenson said of Stern. “The information and net­working and leadership is invaluable, you cannot put a price on it.”

In the Classroom

Holding an associate degree in criminal justice, which he obtained over 20 years ago, Stern said getting back into the classroom was “challenging” being that he had not written a college-level paper since 1993.

In order to get the most out of his classes, Stern spent a few weeks preparing by gathering real-life law enforcement cases that occurred in Roscommon County that could be used as examples in his classes and reviewing the APA (American Psychological Association) format for writing and citing resources in papers. The preparation was done to ready him for six college-level courses through the University of Vir­ginia.

Stern completed courses in fitness management and law enforcement, essentials for law enforcement leaders, con­temporary issues for law enforcement, behavioral science for law enforcement, contemporary issues in policing and media relations and drugs in society and contemporary drug enforce­ment strategies. He said the last three courses in the list were selected by him as he knew he would benefit from them as they are all pertinent to Roscommon County.

“It wasn’t a vacation, I can tell you that,” Stern said of the intense training and course load.

Overall, Stern said he did well in his classes and said he learned how to lead, how to be a more effective leader and how to continue to build a team through effective leadership. He added that the contemporary issues for law enforcement class touched on a variety of topics including Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, autism, shootings and officer suicide. He found both the behavioral science for law enforcement class and the contemporary issues in policing and media relations class to be interesting as they taught him how to relate to oth­ers and how to show the “human” side of law enforcement.

Outside Opportunities

Although Stern said he was committed to performing strong in his classes, he did opt to take part in several sched­uled tours and off-site activities. Over the course of Jan. 8 to March 16, Stern was able to tour the White House and visit Arlington National Cemetery, Mount Vernon, Gettysburg National Military Park, the National Law Enforcement Monu­ment, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Newsuem

National Mall. Many of the trips were not just for fun as they also incor­porated leadership lessons.

During one trip to the National Mall, the focus was taken away from academ­ics and turned the participants’ attention to physical fitness. Stern and the other students took part in a four-mile “fun run” from the United States Capitol to the Lincoln Memorial.

Physical Fitness

Being that law enforcement is a physical career, the FBI National Acad­emy also focuses on physical fitness and challenges students with weekly physi­cal challenges to test the body. One of the requirements to be accepted into the FBI National Academy is being able to run a mile in less than 10 minutes. At the beginning of the FBI National Acad­emy Stern was running a mile in 7:40 and by the end of the training his mile time was reduced to 6:32.

Stern participated in a fitness program that was preparing him for the final challenge called the “Yellow Brick Road,” a 6.1-mile Marine-built obstacle course that has participants climb­ing walls, scaling rock walls, running through creeks and running 3.5 miles. Stern said he “did well” in the “Yellow Brick Road” challenge and completed second in his wave. For his efforts, Stern received a yellow brick souvenir that reads “Yellow Brick Road FBINA 2018.”

A “Humbling” Experience

Being that only one percent of law enforcement personal complete the FBI National Academy, Stern said it was a “humbling experience” as not everyone has the opportunity to take part in such a selective program. By participating in the FBI National Academy, Stern was able to make connections and network with law enforcement from all over the United States and the world. Some examples of the connections he made were with his roommate from Staten Island who served during the attack on the World Trade Center and he formed a friendship with the Deputy Chief of Police of the Danish National Police.

“It was humbling to be accepted to go and attend this school and to be around that executive leadership level from around the world,” Stern said.

Stern said he was nervous to attend the academy and be around high-level law enforcement personnel, however, he quickly realized that being from a smaller department and being the only sheriff in his class was not an issue. He said law enforcement, no matter the size of the agency, deal with the “basic issues are the same across the board” and they are all working to better their communities.

Through the training, Stern learned about the services the FBI can provide to Roscommon County including how to deal with cyber crimes, helping to find missing children and how to inter­view suspects. Stern added the training was not just about his betterment, but making his department more efficient for the community they serve.

Stern said the hardest part of the academy was being away from home and his community for so long. While away, Stern was in constant contact with his family, as well as the staff of the Roscommon County Sheriff’s Office. He thanked his family for the support they provided while he was away, as well as commended the RCSO for “all the hard work” they completed in his absence.

“There was no doubt in my mind the department would run smoothly,” Stern said. “I’m very grateful to experience this and to have the ability to represent my agency and the County of Roscom­mon on a large platform of distin­guished law enforcement.”

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