The Washtenaw 100 celebrated its annual dinner on October 20th at The Morris Lawrence building located on the campus of Washtenaw Community College. Guests were greeted with festive decorations and a wonderful appetizer bar that ushered them into a silent auction. Local artisans and gift certificates from area vendors were featured and bidding was active.
The formal evening began with a welcome by Amy Reiser, Board President of The Washtenaw 100. The flag was then presented by the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Honor Guard. This team marched into the hall in an inspiring, stately fashion to post the colors and then retreat.
After a prayer of thanks by Reverend David Collins, Chaplain of the Pittsfield Township Public Safety Department, dinner was served. Wonderful salads, beef, chicken, and fish were a delight to the various palettes and conversation was lively at the tables.
When dinner wrapped up, the award presentations began. The Law Enforcement Officer of the Year was introduced by Keith Florez, Commander of the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office. The award winner was Sergeant John Cratsenburg, a 15-year Sheriff’s Office veteran. Read more about Sergeant Cratsenberg.
And Firefighter of the Year was introduced by Doug Armstrong, Interim Fire Chief of the Dexter Area Fire Department, who announced Lieutenant Lee Root as the recipient for his 16 years of service. Read more about Lieutenant Root.
While there were many who might have received these awards based on outstanding service these individuals were certainly standouts in their commitment to the community. Amy then introduced the keynote speaker, Greg Stejskal, retired FBI agent who walked through a number of the famous cases he was involved in, even right here in Michigan.
Everyone felt grateful for Greg’s service and glad that the Federal Bureau of Investigation continues to live its mission— “to Protect the American people and uphold the Constitution of the United States.”
The night ended with a strong and fitting conclusion with the retrieval of the flag.
We would like to thank all who joined us in celebrating our hometown heroes as well as our generous sponsors. The proceeds from the dinner’s ticket sales and silent auction will help fund The Washtenaw 100’s future awards of college scholarships to children of local police and firefighting professionals, and grants to area police and fire departments for new safety equipment and programs.