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Guilderland Archives The Altamont Enterprise, August 25, 2011
Forte named NY Juvenile Officer of the Year
By Anne Hayden
GUILDERLAND Senior Patrolman Brian Forte has been selected as the 2011 Juvenile Officer of the Year by the New York State Police Juvenile Officers Association.
After 28 years with the Guilderland Police Department, and 12 years as a school resource officer at Guilderland High School, Forte was nominated for the award by another juvenile officer, as well as the Chief of Police, Carol Lawlor.
Lawlor said Forte started with the department as a dispatcher, then became a road officer, before he requested to be a juvenile officer.
“He was concerned after Columbine happened, and approached me about establishing a School Resource Officer program,” said Lawlor.
In that role, he has handled problems from racist threats to cyber bullying, often building relationships with students.
In addition to the SRO program, he either developed or contributes to the Police Explorer Program; Neighborhood Watch; Mall Watch; Rape Aggression Defense; and National Night Out.
He recently wrote a letter to the Enterprise editor saying that Guilderland’s National Night Out was, “one of the most attended and successful crime-prevention events that we have hosted to date.”
“His dedication to the youth of Guilderland is commendable, as is his commitment to the town and all its residents,” said a release from the police department.
As president of the Police Benevolent Association, in 2009, when the supervisor was cutting back overtime hours because county sales tax revenues were decreasing, Forte said, “The town has asked us to cooperate with their plans in order to avoid layoffs. No one is ever happy to see a reduced salary, but everyone on the force understands the need to cooperate, and we’re doing everything we can to maintain our numbers.”
Forte plans to retire from the police department soon, and run as a Democratic candidate for a seat on the town board in 2012. When he announced his decision to run, he said he wanted to do something good for the community, as he has always done, in his retirement.
Forte will officially receive his award at the state’s Juvenile Officers Association banquet on Sept. 1.