For their public service in 2013, a Conway firefighter, Conway policeman and Faulkner County Sheriff’s deputy was recognized by the Conway Kiwanis Club on Wednesday.
The Kiwanis Club has a long tradition, almost 20 years in the making, of recognizing those who serve and protect, club president Courtney Leach said.
“It’s one of the things, as citizens, we take for granted when you have departments that are going well, and there isn’t a lot of crime,” Leach said. “You just take for granted that you have something wonderful protecting everyone. We want to take a minute to recognize individuals because they are working hard, a lot of the times, behind the scenes, putting their lives at danger.”
Conway firefighter Scott Erwin was recognized as fireman of the year.
Interim fire chief Brian Moix described Erwin as someone who “always goes above and beyond, does more than he’s asked and is a great officer.”
Erwin has 15 years with the Conway Fire Department, including six as a captain. Erwin is also a team leader on the Special Operations Rescue Team.
Conway policeman Thomas Knopp was recognized as officer of the year.
Chief of Police A.J. Gary said when the 20-year veteran began with the department, he had “no doubt” Knopp would be a successful addition.
Knopp has spent 16 years as a field training officer, and also has 14 years as a Special Weapons and Tactics Team member. Knopp is also a certified instructor and teaches such classes as active shooter and taser training.
Faulkner County Sheriff’s deputy Eric Woodward was recognized as deputy of the year.
“He’s a great example of someone I want representing the sheriff’s office,” Sheriff Andy Shock said. “He’s a very kind, humble person.”
Woodward has served the sheriff’s office since 2008 when he began as a detention center officer. Woodward has been promoted to the ranks of Corporal and Sergeant. He is currently on patrol division, and a SWAT member.
Each honoree received a $100 check from the Kiwanis Club, Leach said. This was the first year a sheriff’s deputy had been recognized.
(Staff writer Lee Hogan can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 505-1246. Follow Lee Hogan on Twitter at twitter.com/LCD_LeeHogan.)