Author: Admin

IAWP Registration is Open!

We are happy to announce that we have set up a SPECIAL REDUCED RATE that is ONLY for delegate registration during the 2017 Cairns conference, August 12 – September 21, 2017

This rate is the very lowest we are going to be able to offer, so jump on board and make your plans for IAWP 2019 Anchorage!

Click here for the IAWP 2019 Anchorage Website to register and stay up to date  (admittedly, we don’t have much info up there now, but we are working on it!)

April 2017 Letter from the President

Welcome to the Women Police of Alaska version 2017!

President Andrea Jacobson

When I started in law enforcement, I was the only female officer in the department.   Back in those days, uniforms were ordered from a catalog and took weeks to arrive.  On my first day, they had me go through a 4-foot high pile of shirts and pants that were thrown into a corner of a closet to pick out my uniform until mine arrived.  They were all men’s sizes and I looked like a little kid trying on daddy’s clothes.  It’s no wonder the people I worked with gave me about as much regard as they would a kid who walked among them.   In those first few weeks, I had no idea how to fit in.  There was no one who would show me the ropes, tell me the tricks, or make me feel welcome.

When the Women Police of Alaska was first formed, I knew I had to join.  It wasn’t because I thought the dinosaurs I first worked with still ruled the earth.  It was because I knew how tough it was for me to break into a male-dominated field and I felt I had some knowledge and experience that may help others in that journey.  I found that women have a lot to contribute to the field of law enforcement and there are not nearly enough of us at the moment.  I also learned that mentoring can be empowering to those that give as well as those that receive.

The WPA is an affiliate of the International Association of Women Police (IAWP).  The international group brings together cultures and perspectives that broaden our world view of women in policing.   It is not only a fantastic opportunity, but an awesome undertaking for the WPA to host the 2019 IAWP conference in Anchorage.  Our theme is Mentoring the Next Generation. This particular theme was echoed in many of the classes I took at the 2016 conference in Barcelona.  Mentoring is a need we share and a gift we can offer.   This will be a great time to watch our unique group of members come together with a focus of providing excellent training, organizational moxie, and a spirit of enthusiasm for our state.  I look forward to making over 700 new friends at the conference and hope you will join in the fun and occasional hard work to make this a terrific experience.  If you aren’t a member, please join us.  If you are a member, stay tuned for the world’s biggest punch list  of conference chores.

Stay safe and do good things,

~~~Andrea Jacobson

March 2015 Letter from the President

Wow. It is already March, which really shouldn’t be too hard to believe with our noticeable lack of snow this winter of 2014 -2015.  In fact, what a difference a year makes as evidence by my deck below – the top photo was taken on March 15, 2014 and the bottom taken on March 15, 2015. Even more unusual, my deck looked like the bottom photo in mid-February as well!

But forget about a year, the next month is going to be an especially busy one for Women Police of Alaska.

First of all – we have our biennial elections to be accomplished by April 20, 2015, the date of our next Biannual General Membership meeting at the Glacier Brewhouse at noon in Anchorage on the first day of the Alaska Peace Officers Association 2015 Crime Conference. I plan to send balloting out around April 10, but first, I need to hear from those interested in running for the board, or nominations – all positions are up for election including my position – President (I will remain on the board as Past-President).  If I don’t hear from you, you may be hearing from me!

Second, the 6th annual Women in Law Enforcement Recruitment Fair in October of 2014 was such a success, UAA Career Services and the Alaska State Troopers would like to have a spring fair, we can call it the 6 ½ Annual Women in LE Recruitment Fair, on April 15, 2015 in the Student Union at the University of Alaska Anchorage from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Here is a link to the blog from our 6th Annual Fair in October: http://uaajusticecenter.blogspot.com/2014/11/a-look-at-6th-annual-women-in-law.html.

And third, during the 55th Annual APOA Crime Conference, which will be held at the Anchorage Sheraton from April 20-24, 2015, Women Police of Alaska will be hosting a silent auction during the Thursday, April 23, evening banquet and wine-tasting event.  The proceeds, as in past years, will go towards our scholarship fund in hopes that we can fund a scholarship for 2015-2106.  I’m looking for both donated items to auction, or ideas for to whom I can grovel (I will do the groveling) for donations. Even if you are not attending the APOA conference, all WPA members are invited to attend the wine-tasting / silent auction event and I hope many of you will.

And while I am on the subject of the APOA Crime Conference, at our December 3, 2014 WPA membership meeting, we passed a motion to sponsor a WPA member to 2015 APOA Crime Conference in Anchorage.  That is, we will cover the full conference fee – free, complimentary – better than a Groupon.  The full conference includes all training, events, door prize opportunities, meals and snacks.  Send me an email at michele.logan@womenpoliceofalaska.org if you are interested.  If we have several who are interested, we will do something creative like cast lots to see who attends!

You will be hearing from me again sooner than you think.  In the meantime, stay safe!

Your President,
Michele Logan

September 2014 Letter from the President

I believe the first question I asked in my last newsletter was – Where does the time go?  Well, five months have passed, and I still do not know the answer to that question.  In fact, I have a new question – Where did the Alaska summer of 2014 go??

To bring you up-to-date on what we have done since spring, and what we are doing as an association, we had our biannual spring General Membership Meeting on May 12, 2014 in Fairbanks during the 2014 APOA Annual Crime Conference.

On Saturday, August 9, we had our annual WPA Picnic in Wasilla at Rae Arno’s Wildwood Farm.  It was a “class reunion” of sorts. We had several members who have retired from law enforcement, and some who had moved out of state who were able to be in Alaska, join us, including past Presidents Julia Grimes and Dyanne Brown, and Cindy Moore and others.  You can view some photos from our picnic in our PHOTO GALLERY.  What started out as one of our signature rainy August days gave way to a very pleasant afternoon. It is always great to see old friends and new ones at our picnics and meetings.

Speaking of retired WPA members, we can now add to that group Shirley Coté, a past president and founder of the Women Police of Alaska in 1997. Shirley retired from her most recent position as Director of the State of Alaska Alcoholic Beverage Control Board in May 2014 after 33 years in law enforcement. Shirley’s heralded law enforcement career included 2 years as a deputy sheriff with the Meridian Township Police in Michigan, 20 years with the Anchorage Police Department, where she was promoted to the level of Captain, and over 6 years as Chief of Police of the Soldotna (Alaska) Police Department. She spent about 6 years as a consultant and trainer before being appointed Director of the ABC Board by then Governor Sarah Palin in January of 2009. Shirley was also instrumental in bringing the worldwide conference for the International Association of Women Police (IAWP) to Anchorage in 1985 and 1998 (see our PHOTO GALLERY – no, really, see our PHOTO GALLERY – there are some really swell pictures of Shirley there!). Shirley has already said she is as busy in retirement as she was while working, which is good, because that means we will still be able to see her around town. Congratulations, Shirley, on this next exciting chapter of your life!

In other news, we have recently received word from the UAA Justice Center and the Alaska State Troopers, our partners, that we will have a 6th Annual Women in Law Enforcement Recruitment Fair on Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014.  The LE fair will be from 9:00 AM to 3 PM at the UAA Student Union (near the bookstore).  Parking is free that day.  If you know anyone, male or female, interested in an exciting career in law enforcement, send them our way.  Photos of recruitment fairs past can be viewed in our Photo GALLERY and at our POLICE RECRUITING FAIR link.

Speaking of the UAA Justice Center, the Alaska Justice Statistical Analysis Center recently completed and published a Fact Sheet regarding “State and Local Law Enforcement Personnel in Alaska:  1982-2012” highlighting law enforcement personnel numbers of local and state agencies, including the representation of women in policing in Alaska.  In short, as of 2012, the percentage of female sworn officers in Alaska is 8.3% of total LE officers, down from a high of 10.2% in 2004.  The Anchorage Police Department, the largest agency in the state by total sworn officers, fairs a bit better with the percentage of female sworn officers at 14% as of 2012.  The study only includes state and local sworn officers, and does not consider the large population of federal law enforcement officers assigned here in our state.  You can read the complete study at the following link:
http://justice.uaa.alaska.edu/ajsac/2014/ajsac.14-02.lawenf_personnel.pdf.

That’s it for now.  Our next meeting will be in December during the APSC Executive Conference in Anchorage during the first week of December 2014.  Check back to this website for meeting details.  Have a wonderful rest of 2014 and Merry Christmas if I don’t see you before then!

Stay Safe!

Your President,
Michele Logan

April 2014 Letter from the President

Welcome to the Women Police of Alaska webpage! Where does the time go?  This is my first entry for 2014 and it is already April!

After a busy and productive 2013, we are gearing up for 2014 with our upcoming biannual spring General Membership Meeting on May 12, 2014 in Fairbanks during the 2014 APOA Annual Crime Conference.  The meeting will be held at the Fairbanks Police Department, 911 Cushman Rd Fairbanks at noon.  It is always great to see old friends and new ones at the meetings.

It is still not too late to register and attend the Crime Conference (http://www.apoa2014.jigsy.com/) – the Farthest North Chapter has planned some great training and networking events – and the weather in Fairbanks is already fabulous.

Check back after our May meeting to see what we have planned for the second half of the year.  In the meantime, I hope to see many of you in Fairbanks!

Stay Safe!

Your President,
Michele Logan

November 2013 Letter from the President

November 2013
Welcome to the Women Police of Alaska webpage! I regret the delay in updating our website, but the fabulous Alaska summer of 2013 got in the way! Nonetheless, your Women Police of Alaska organization has been busy since my last update in February 2013.

To begin the year, we had our biennial elections in April.  The officers elected to a two-year term from 2013 to 2015 are as follows:  President:  Michele Logan, Vice-President: Kris Sell, Secretary:  Julie-Dee Sharkey, Treasurer:  Rae Arno, and Board Members:  Kelly Alzaharna, Maxine Andrews, Sherrie Daigle, and Andrea Jacobson.

In May, we had our first of two annual General Membership meetings at Froso’s in Soldotna during the APOA Crime Conference week.  We had a great showing and an all-around fabulous time.  See photos of the meeting and the swearing-in of the new officers in our PHOTO GALLERY.

In June, we had our annual WPA Summer Picnic at Rae Arno’s Wildwood Farm in Wasilla.  We had several members make it in from Fairbanks and points beyond.  And as was keeping with our summer in general this year, we had fantasic weather, great food, fun and fellowship. See the photos in our PHOTO GALLERY.

We inducted our fourth all-time Life Member into the Women Police of Alaska at our June picnic.  Angella Long, a long time Board Member of the WPA since just about our inception as an organization, and a committee member of the 1998 IAWP Anchorage conference undertaking, was recognized for her contributions to WPA with a Life Membership.  Angella recently retired (we’ll see how long that holds up) from the Alaska Department of Public Safety Professional Standards, and before that as Chief of Police of Wasilla PD.  A wonderful and storied law enforcement career here in Alaska by all accounts.  Congratulations Angella!

We rounded out the fourth quarter of 2013 with the 5th Annual Women in Law Enforcement Recruitment Fair at the University of Alaska Anchorage on October 4, 2013, partnering with the Alaska State Troopers, the Alaska Association of Chiefs of Police and the UAA Justice Center.  The 2013 fair was a our biggest fair yet, despite the absence of several federal law enforcement agencies due to the federal shut down in early October 2013. A photo blog of the 2013 fair can be found at the following link, courtesy of Barbara Armstrong of the UAA Justice Center:
http://uaajusticecenter.blogspot.com/2013/10/5th-annual-women-in-law-enforcement.html.

To wrap up 2103, we have our second biannual general membership meeting of the year on December 4, 2103 during the APSC Executive Development Conference in Anchorage.  Dave and Betsy Smith of the Winning Mind seminars, and friends and favorites of law enforcement here in Alaska will be the featured trainers at this year’s conference.

See our MEETINGS and EVENTS tab to get the most up-to-date meeting place and time for our general membership meeting.  I hope to see you on December 4th!

Stay Safe!

Your President,
Michele Logan

February 2013 Letter from the President

Welcome to the Women Police of Alaska webpage! I hope 2013 is going well for each of you. I tried to get this update sent out in January, but the next thing I knew, it was February! I’m sure many of you can relate!

We rounded out the fourth quarter of 2012 with the 4th Annual Women in Law Enforcement Recruitment Fair at the University of Alaska Anchorage, October 24, 2012, partnering with the Alaska State Troopers, the Alaska Association of Chiefs of Police and the UAA Justice Center.  The 2012 was a success and a blog, courtesy of Barbara Armstrong of the UAA Justice Center, can be found at:  http://uaajusticecenter.blogspot.com/2012/12/a-look-back-at-2012-women-in-law.html.

In conjunction with the Women in Law Enforcement Career week, WPA member Kelly Alzaharna, who also happens to be the Director of the Alaska Police Standards Council –APSC-(Alaska’s “POST”), was able to facilitate bringing the training class “Career and Tactical Survival for Women” to Anchorage with renowned trainer Betsy Brantner-Smith on October 25, 2012.  Over 60 women AND men attended the training and WPA provided refreshments for the class.

Closing out the year, we had our second biannual general membership meeting of the year in December during the APSC Executive Development Conference.

In other news, in September 2012, one of our members, Gwen Grimes, an officer with the North Slope Borough Police Department, was featured in an Officer.com article about challenges with clothing and gear used by patrol officers in climates ranging “From Balmy to Bitter Cold”.  You guessed it – Gwen’s part was about the bitter cold!  You can read the informative article at: http://www.officer.com/article/10773520/from-balmy-to-bitter-cold.

And lastly, 2013 is a biennial election year for WPA.  All positions on the Board of Directors will be up for election or re-election. The offices of President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer and four Board members at large will be on the ballot.  Angella Long and Pat Liss have graciously volunteered to be the nominating committee and seek nominations for the ballots to be sent out in April in advance of our next biannual general membership meeting at the 2013 APOA Crime Conference which will be held in Kenai May 20-24 this year.

Best wishes to you all for a SAFE and prosperous 2013!

Your President
Michele Logan

October 2012 Letter from the President

October is in full swing and so are the activities of Women Police of Alaska.

First, our scholarship committee consisting of Maxine Andrews, Sarah Hieb, Andrea Jacobson and Julie-Dee Sharkey, has awarded a $1,000 scholarship for the 2012-2013 school year to Regan Fitzgerald of Anchorage.  Congratulations to Regan!  And thank you again to our members in Juneau who worked on the WPA Silent Auction in Juneau in May during the 2012 Alaska Peace Officers Association Training Conference to raise money for the scholarship fund.

The 4th Annual Women in Law Enforcement Recruitment Fair has been scheduled and will be held at the University of Alaska – Anchorage on Wednesday, October 24, 2012 from 11:00 AM until 6:00 PM.  We help plan, sponsor and attend this annual career fair with the UAA Justice Center, the Alaska State Troopers, and the Alaska Associations of Chiefs of Police.  See the advertisement flyer under Police Recruiting Event.

Our next meeting will be our biannual membership meeting in Anchorage on Wednesday, December 5, 2012 during the APSC Executive Development Conference.  We will have a lunch meeting at our usual location of China Lights 9220 Old Seward Hwy which is conveniently located near the Dimond Center Hotel, the location of the conference.

If you have any newsworthy items for our members, announcements, achievements, etc., or any questions or concerns about Women Police of Alaska, please e-mail that information to me, Michele Logan.

Be sure to check back to this website from time to time for updates and new happenings.  In the meantime, stay safe!

Your President
Michele Logan

June 2012 Letter from the President

The annual Alaska Peace Officers Association 2012 Crime Conference, sponsored by the Capital City Chapter, was held in Juneau, Alaska May 21-25, 2012.  Kudos go out to the Capital City Chapter members, several who are Women Police of Alaska members, including Kris Sell, Kelly Magee, Sarah Hieb, Sherrie Daigle, Kim Horn, Kelly Alzaharna, and others, for a successful, fun and fantastic week of excellent training and networking activities.  We even managed to get one of Juneau’s 38 days a year of bright, clear sunshine during the five day conference!

We had our annual WPA General membership meeting during the APOA conference on Monday, May 21.  We had a terrific turnout for the meeting with 18 members and would-be-members attending.  The minutes from that meeting will be posted under the link for Meeting Minutes.  We also had a successful silent auction at the conference benefiting our WPA scholarship fund.  The final numbers are not yet in, but it appears we made approximately $1,500 which will be put towards our scholarships in the future.  We are currently accepting scholarship applications for the 2012-2013 academic year through June 15.

Congratulations are in order for WPA member Kelly Alzaharna who was appointed in June 2012 to be the Executive Director of the Alaska Police Standards Council (APSC), the State of Alaska’s version of what most states call their law enforcement “POST”.  Kelly was appointed as the APSC Training Coordinator in May of 2011, then acting Executive Director.  Kelly’s background includes 25 years of law enforcement experience, and when she retired in 2011, she was the Police Chief of the North Slope Borough Police Department in Barrow, Alaska.  Of particular note, Kelly is the first woman to be appointed Executive Director of APSC in the history of Alaska.  Congratulations, Kelly!

I also want to send out a special thank you and recognition to WPA member, Cheryl Gilmour, a CSO with the Alaska Bureau of Judicial Services in Barrow, Alaska.  Cheryl has been coordinating with a female officer from Scotland who will be traveling to Alaska in June on a trip of a lifetime. Cheryl has been helping Elizabeth Porch, a Police Sergeant with Grampian Police in Aberdeen , Scotland , UK with her activities in Barrow which will include polar bear viewing and a meet and greet with North Slope Borough PD.  I hope to meet with Elizabeth when she passes through Anchorage.

And finally, save the date!  The 4th Annual Women in Law Enforcement Recruitment Fair has been scheduled and will be held at the University of Alaska – Anchorage on Wednesday, October 24, 2012.  More details will be forthcoming as we plan this event with the UAA Justice Center and the Alaska State Troopers.

Our next definitely planned meeting will be our biannual membership meeting in Anchorage during the APSC Executive Development Conference in December 2012. Be sure to check back to this website from time to time for updates and new happenings. In the meantime, have a great summer and stay safe!

Your President
Michele Logan

March 2012 Letter from the President

Well, spring is here – which may be hard to believe if you look outside!

But certainly by our next General Membership meeting on May 21, 2012 in Juneau at the Alaska Peace Officers Association Crime Conference, spring will be in the air!  We will provide a catered lunch for our meeting that day; the exact location will be announced.  For details and to sign up for the 2012 APOA Crime Conference sponsored by the Capital City Chapter, go to the APOA website at www.apoaonline.org.

We are going to have a silent auction fundraiser for our scholarship fund at the Crime Conference on Thursday, May 24.  I am looking for donations of items to be auctioned.  The last time we had an auction at the Juneau conference, thanks to the hard work of our members in Juneau, we raised over $1,200 for our WPA scholarships.  If you will not be able to attend the conference in Juneau, but have items to donate, please contact me at michele.logan@womenpoliceofalaska.org and I will arrange to pick up your item(s) and get them to Juneau.  Also, please contact me if you have suggestions for donations that I can follow up on.

May is also Police Memorial Month and once again, Women Police of Alaska, along with Anchorage Police Department Employees Association, APOA – Anchorage Chapter, FOAST and the Alaska Public Safety Employees Association, has donated money to the Police Memorial Picnic on the west lawn of APD in advance of the Anchorage ceremony on May 11, 2012.

We are still working to obtain a charitable gaming permit, and from the last indication, we are planning to partner with the UAA Justice Center, the Alaska State Troopers and the Alaska Association of Chiefs of Police to have our 4th consecutive Women in Law Enforcement Career Fair at the University of Alaska Anchorage this fall.  Details will be provided when they are available.

In the meantime, stay safe, keep looking for spring, and I hope to see you at our General Membership meeting in beautiful Juneau, Alaska!

Your President
Michele Logan