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HCSO receives award for supporting deputies serving in military

April 4th, 2014 10:55 pm by Jeff Bobo

HCSO receives award for supporting deputies serving in military

HCSO Lt. James Woods, center, received a "Patriotic Employer" certificate Monday from U.S. Dept. of Defense area representatives James M. Cross, far left, and Jim Barnette, second from right. Contributed photo.

ROGERSVILLE — The Hawkins County Sheriff's Office was recognized this week for its support of its employees in the military, but Sheriff Ronnie Lawson said he believes his department is the real beneficiary.

On Monday morning, HCSO Lt. James Woods was presented with a "Patriotic Employer" certificate by James M. Cross and Jim Barnette, who are Tennessee area chairmen for the United States Department of Defense, representing the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) program.

The ESGR program recognizes and encourages patriotic employers who are willing to work around the schedules of employees serving in the National Guard and Army Reserve.

Woods was nominated for the award by court transport Deputy Thomas Morrison, who also serves as a specialist with the 991st Transport Company based in Mount Carmel.

The HCSO currently has three officers serving in the military, including Morrison and two officers who work in the jail.

Sheriff Ronnie Lawson said the Patriotic Employer certificate is a tremendous honor for Woods and his department.

There are several military veterans working in the HCSO, and Lawson said his three current active military employees are creating a solid foundation for themselves for careers in law enforcement.

"Obviously my officers' military obligations supercedes everything, and we can find somebody to fill that slot when we need to," Lawson said. "Military experience is going to make a better employee in any occupation, but especially in law enforcement. They're being taught military discipline, teamwork and other skills that are an asset to a law enforcement agency.

"I have several retired military personnel working for me now, and this department is benefiting from their leadership, abilities and experience."

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