CRESTVIEW — The Crestview Police Department command staff selected Community Services Officer Wanda Hulion as its officer of the year. A grandmother of five, Hulion had previously been the department’s Officer of the Quarter for the October to December period.

Operations Division Commander Andrew Schneider cited her effectiveness as a Community Services officer whose duties include supervising school zones, training civilian volunteers, co-instructing the Citizens Police Academy and Youth Academy, establishing Neighborhood Watch programs, performing business security assessments, and presenting school and daycare safety programs.

"Wanda does cool stuff," Schneider said. "She was selected because she spearheads several programs voluntarily for the community."

"I was sure surprised," Hulion said. "I’ve just been doing my job out in the community."

Her fellow officers shared Schneider’s praise for the Officer of the Year.

"She’s always ready to help other officers," Sgt. Don Howe said. "She’s a huge asset to the organization, and being in Community Services, she’s in the perfect field. She loves helping the community."

Her partner, Officer Sam Kimmons, said since Hulion joined Community Services, together they have been able to vastly expand the division and provide more programs and services to the community.

"Wanda is a great partner," Kimmons said. "She was born and raised in Crestview and she cares deeply for her community. She is a giving person and on more than one occasion she has bought materials for our programs with her own money."

Community Services is a whole different type of police work than most officers experience, Hulion said.

"It’s not as exciting as patrol but it has its rewards," she said. "I like working with the kids. Anything community-oriented I’m all about. I do the job because I like helping people and you get to help a lot of people in Community Service."

The department still trusts Hulion can handle patrol duties.

"I know she’s a dead-eye shot on the move," Howe said. "I’ve seen her in action on the range."

"She is well-deserving of this honor," Kimmons said.