Volunteer of the Year 2015
In July of 2014, Officer Luke Bonkiewicz and Sergeant John Walsh recruited Kellon Johnson, then a student at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, to assist with an intensive data collection project which was designed to examine the impact of LPD's mental health referral program. Kellon was asked to build a database of mental health consumers.
Kellon gathered an enormous amount of data by examining the biographical profile, criminal history and mental health investigations of over five hundred individuals. This was no simple task. First, Kellon needed to learn the LPD incident code book and the sixty variables for which to code. He next had to identify the subjects of mental health investigations whom officers referred to the Mental Health Association. He then coded their biographical markers and reviewed their criminal histories to tally the number of misdemeanor and felony arrests. Finally, he read through the investigations, collecting information about protective custody incidents and mental health conditions. It's estimated that he likely reviewed over 1,500 mental health investigations.
Kellon worked tirelessly at this task for many months, displaying diligence and creativity in extracting critical data from a variety of sources. His work became the foundation for a database that allowed Bonkiewicz and Walsh to analyze an alternative method of policing mental health consumers. It's very possible that without Kellon's contribution and work, several important deadlines would have been missed and in the end, it saved Bonkiewicz and Walsh about a year's worth of work, allowing them to focus on their caseloads.
Although Kellon was a volunteer for LPD for only half of 2014, he completed an amount of work that would have taken others at least a year to complete. Through it all, Kellon never complained, but took extra steps to ensure his work was accurate. His dedication, assiduousness and efficiency led those he worked with to believe he should be considered for recognition. The Awards Committee agrees and is very proud to name Kellon Johnson the 2015 Volunteer of the Year.