The Georgia State Patrol graduated its 100th Trooper School on Friday, August 18, at the Georgia Public Safety Training Center in Forsyth. After 31 weeks of intense training, 13 new troopers will report to patrol posts throughout the state on Monday, September 18. Governor Nathan Deal was the keynote speaker. Additional remarks were given by Colonel Mark W. McDonough, Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety and Capt. Scott Woodell, Director of Training. The Oath of Office was issued by Lt. Colonel Russell Powel, Deputy Commissioner.
“The graduation of the 100th Trooper School is the beginning of our department’s recovery from personnel shortages,” states Colonel Mark W. McDonough.
Trooper Cadets spend 18 weeks at the academy, 12 weeks in field training, and return to the academy for one week of preparation for graduation. The Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council (POST) requires that all peace officers receive a minimum of 400 hours of Basic Mandate Training. At the completion of Trooper School, these newly graduated trooper cadets received over 1,500 hours of training, including driving, defensive tactics, vehicle stops, Spanish, criminal law and criminal procedure, firearms, accident investigation, and various other training.
During remarks to his fellow class members, class president, Tpr. Damien Serrata, reflected on the brotherhood they had created over the past 31 weeks and its importance to their roles as state troopers.
Four of the graduates received special honors for top performance in various fields of study. The honorees were:
• Highest Firearms Proficiency – Tpr. Michael Talbott, II
• Highest Driving Proficiency – Tpr. Damien Serrata
• Highest Academic Average – Tpr. Arash Trugh
• Top Gun – Tpr. Matthew Sanders
This year, Tpr. Arash Trugh received an award from Reinhardt University for the highest academic average. Since he already has a bachelor’s and master’s degree, the $1,000 scholarship towards a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Reinhardt went to Tpr. Richard Holman who had the second highest academic average.
Additionally, the following graduates were recognized for their leadership: Tpr. Adrien Jean, Vice President; Tpr. Richard Bell, Secretary/Treasurer; Tpr. Tyler Easter, Sergeant-At-Arms; Tpr. Jordan McLean, Pennant Bearer; and Tpr. Richard Holman, Chaplain.
|Richard Bell||Richmond, GA||Post 11 – Hinesville|
|Robert Donaldson||Cordele, GA||Post 30 – Cordele|
|Tyler Easter||Milledgeville, GA||Post 33 – Milledgeville|
|Ricard Holman||Woodstock, GA||Post 3 – Cartersville|
|Adrien Jean||Folkston, GA||Post 23 – Brunswick|
|Johntavius King||Cordele, GA||Post 30 – Cordele|
|Devon Mathis||Douglasville, GA||Post 47 – Forest Park|
|Jordan McLean||Hampton, GA||Post 51 – Gwinnett|
|James Randall||Canon, GA||Post 52 – Hartwell|
|Matthew Sanders||Rome, GA||Post 29 – Paulding|
|Damien Serrata||Tifton, GA||Post 13 – Tifton|
|Michael Talbot, II||Dublin, GA||Post 45 – Swainsboro|
|Arash Trugh||Marietta, GA||Post 29 – Paulding|
Information provided via press release from the Georgia State Patrol