Maine residents complete USBP’s Citizens Academy

12 years ago

Maine residents complete USBP’s Citizens Academy

By Kathy McCarty

Staff Writer

    ASHLAND — Seven local citizens from the Ashland and Fort Fairfield areas successfully completed the third Citizens Academy on May 12, held in Ashland and hosted by the U.S. Border Patrol Fort Fairfield station — the third such class the station has put on. Participants received classroom and hands-on instruction on the training and programs implemented by Border Patrol agents for successfully completing their mission.

Photo courtesy of USPB

    Houlton Sector Chief Patrol Agent Joseph Mellia, second from left, is shown with the class participants and Citizens Academy organizers and facilitators. Pictured from left are: Border Patrol Agent Glenn Blier, Chief Patrol Agent Joseph Mellia, J. Rodney Lamoreau, Leigh Smith, Stephen Nichols, Jonathan Seiler, Patrol Agent in Charge Dennis Harmon, Harry Hafford and Supervisory Border Patrol Agent David Wood.  FS-USBPCitizensAcademy-cx-sharpt-20

    “The Citizens Academy consisted of local citizens and met every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for a three-week period. The Academy informed the participants on the overall mission and function of the U.S. Border Patrol and the Houlton Sector,” said Jodi Williams, supervisory Border Patrol agent, Houlton Sector headquarters.

    The program is similar to ones put on in the past by the Presque Isle Police Department and recently hosted by the Houlton Police Department. Participants get a first-hand look at the duties of local officers, the challenges they face and what the public can do to be pro-active in keeping their communities safe.

    “The Houlton Sector Citizens Academies are open to all citizens, 18 years of age and above, who are interested in learning about the Border Patrol’s history, legal authority, mission, operations and partnerships. Attendees receive approximately 12 to 15 hours of instruction within a period of three to five weeks from Border Patrol agents and various guest speakers, including other federal and local law enforcement agencies,” said Williams.

    “The hands-on instructions the participants receive consist of demonstrations and scenarios relating to policy and procedure, as well as utilizing some of the tools of the trade,” continued Williams.

    The Fort Fairfield Station wished to thank all of the participants and guest speakers for making this academy another great success, according to Williams.

    “The Houlton Sector would also like to thank the employees of the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Ashland Regional Headquarters for allowing the academy to be held at their facility. Thank you to everyone and we look forward to hosting another academy next year,” said Williams.