Close to 40 will be honored at inaugural Bill Dirks awards

Ceremony named for county’s only African American sheriff set for Nov. 17

From Staff Reports

Oct 18, 2007 - The Hopkins County African American Leadership Conference is scheduled to present almost 40 awards to area peace officers, firefighters and others at the first Bill Dirks Law Enforcement Awards Ceremony, scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 17.

The ceremony is slated to begin at 6 p.m. at the Cypress District Building, located at 400 Como St.

Bill Dirks was the first African American sheriff of Hopkins County.

"His life is a living legend," according to a press release from the Hopkins County African American Leadership Conference. "He is a devoted man of God; family values are paramount in his life, a veteran with an honorable discharge, a community and civic leader, and a loving father and grandfather."

Dirks started his 16-year career in the Hopkins County Sheriff's Office in the early 1980s. He was named chief deputy after Mark Bassham was elected sheriff in 1998, then appointed sheriff in 1990 when Bassham resigned to become an investigator for the Texas and Southwest Cattle Raisers' Assocation. Dirks was elected to a full term in 1992.

Former Hopkins County Judge Joe Minter will be the keynote speaker for the event, which is open to the public. There is no charge for admission, and free food will be served after the program.

Those who have been selected to receive awards at the ceremony include:

  • Judge Phyllis Rogers — Judge of the Year
  • Eddie Northcutt — Attorney of the Year
  • Philip Kemp — Law Enforcement Peace Officer of the Year
  • Cheryl Fulcher — Court Official of the Year
  • Donna Spinato — Female Peace Officer of the Year
  • Don Patterson — Commissioner of the Year
  • Amy Fairchild — Law Enforcement Employee of the Year
  • Patricia Dorner — Legal Clerk of the Year
  • Hopkins County Sheriff's Posse — Law Enforcement Agency of the Year
  • Jay McKee — Fireman of the Year
  • Joe Hogue — Male Peace Officer of the Year
  • David Reynolds — Male Peace Officer of the Year
  • Bill Reese — Male Peace Officer of the Year
  • Hank Sibley — Law Enforcement Supervisor of the Year
  • Yvonne King — Justice of the Peace Officer of the Year
  • Roger "Tex" Maynard — Constable of the Year
  • Amy Griggs — Distinguished Service Award for Law Enforcement
  • Jimmy White — Excellence in Law Enforcement Award
  • Lee Skidmore — Excellence in Law Enforcement Award
  • Ronnie Nabors — Sulphur Springs Law Enforcement Officer of the Year
  • Denise Stinson — Sulphur Springs Law Enforcement Officer of the Year
  • Henry Turner — Hopkins County Community Service Award
  • Antwone Young — Outstanding Achievement in Law Enforcement
  • Jameison Hawkins — Outstanding Achievement in Law Enforcement
  • Ron Plaxco — Hopkins County Award for Valor
  • Tony Crouse — Hopkins County Award for Valor
  • Harold McClure — Hopkins County Award for Valor
  • Bryan Vaughn — Award for Quality in Law Enforcement
  • Rex Morgan — Excellence in Law Enforcement Communication Award
  • Joe Minter — The Bill and Delores Dirks Outstanding Support for Law Enforcement Award
  • Demetra Robinson — Hopkins County Distinguished Service Award
  • Harry Washington — East Texas Award for Valor
  • Barry Washington — East Texas Award for Valor
  • Fast Bail Bonds — Bail Bonding Company of the Year
  • SOS Bail Bonds — Bail Bonding Company of the Year
  • Lewis Tatum — Hopkins County Award of Merit
  • Bennie Findley — Hopkins County Award of Merit
  • Sean Reneau — Hopkins County Peace Officer of the Year
  • Holly Rosamond — Distinguished Service in Law Enforcement

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