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Sheriff named tops in Georgia
Paxton: Honor is 'humbling'
NSA Award
Forsyth County Sheriff Ted Paxton, center, received the state sheriff of the year award Thursday. - photo by Submitted
Watch program is tops in nation

The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office recently received the 2009 National Award for Excellence in Neighborhood Watch.

The local program was named the “most exemplary Neighborhood Watch program” in the country.

More than 240 Forsyth County neighborhoods are certified in the program or are in the process of being certified.

Through Neighborhood Watch, participating residents are notified of any criminal or suspicious activity in their area.

The award was presented by the National Sheriff’s Association, the Bureau of Justice Assistance Office of Justice Program, the U.S. Department of Justice and

For more information about the sheriff’s Neighborhood Watch program, call (678)-513-5982.

-- Julie Arrington
Forsyth County's Ted Paxton has been named the best sheriff in Georgia.

Paxton received the Georgia Sheriff’s Association Sheriff of the Year Award during a ceremony Thursday night.

The ceremony was part of the association’s summer conference for sheriffs held in the Ritz-Carlton Lodge at Reynolds Plantation near Lake Oconee.

“It’s a very tremendous honor to say the least,” Paxton said. “I was very surprised. It certainly is very humbling that your peers, after reviewing what you do and your accomplishments and looking at all the other sheriffs in the state, that they decide that for the year you were the best one.”

Paxton, 56, was re-elected to a third four-year term in November and has worked in law enforcement nearly 40 years.

He retired in 2000 as a captain from the DeKalb County Police Department and is also a member of the National Sheriff’s Association, International Association of Chiefs of Police and FBI Law Enforcement Executive Development Association.

He was also the recipient of the association’s 2007 President’s Award, given for making a significant contribution to the Georgia Sheriff’s Association Youth Homes.

According to his nomination packet, Paxton introduced the Statistical Tracking and Resource Plan in 2004.

The plan is a way of gathering crime information through a records management system and crime analysis program. The information is used to identify criminal activity, determine hot spots and isolate crime trends in Forsyth County.

The plan was a finalist for the 2008 IACP/Motorola Webber Seavey Award for Quality in Law Enforcement.

In the nomination, Paxton also is credited with introducing the “precinct structure,” which has resulted in the agency’s north and south precincts. As a result, average response times to calls has dropped by eight minutes.

In addition, the sheriff has introduced the Neighborhood Watch program in Forsyth County, launched the Citizens Law Enforcement Academy and in 2008 began training residents for a Community Emergency Response Team.

The sheriff’s office won the 2006 National Sheriff’s Office Traffic Safety Award and the National Sheriff’s Office Youth Alcohol Awareness Award.

The agency won the 2007 IACP Championship Class Second Place Award and the IACP Motorcycle Safety Award.

E-mail Julie Arrington at