Harrisonburg Police officer receives Law Enforcement Commendation award
One of the SAR’s annual awards is the Law Enforcement Commendation and Medal, which recognizes public safety officials. This includes police officers, attorneys, judges, prosecutors and legislators who have performed an exceptional act or service beyond what is normally expected.
This year the award was presented to HPD Officer Mike Gangloff for his devotion and exceptional service he provides to the field of law enforcement.
Gangloff, more commonly known as “Officer Mike,” began his career with the Harrisonburg Police Department in 1997. Not long into his career he realized his deep desire to assist the youth of the community. Gangloff started as a Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E) instructor in June of 1999 and has since carried the torch for that position for over 20 years.
“Officer Mike’s compassion for children is as large as his frame, and enthusiastically serves the youth in the community as a teacher and mentor,” said HPD Chief Eric English.
Gangloff has a positive impact in educating the Harrisonburg community on substance abuse whether it be D.A.R.E. which is presented throughout the elementary schools, the Community Police Academy or DUI awareness to College and High School students.
Besides D.A.R.E. Gangloff has also been the Department’s liaison with the Special Olympics since 2004, helps lead the department’s Community Police Academy, is head of the revitalized Explorer Program through the Boy Scouts of America and plays an instrumental role in the department’s National Night Out program.
In 2019 Gangloff helped develop the first annual P.A.T.C.H. (Pride, Accountability, Teamwork, Courage, and Honor) Camp, which provided youth ages 12-16 the ability to see how police officers operate.
“Officer Mike’s commitment to the youth in the community is unmatched,” says HPD Community Resource Unit Sergeant Charles Grubbs. “He embodies the Harrisonburg Police Department’s philosophy of community policing.”
The Fort Harrison Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution stated “the career as a First Responder is often a thankless and selfless career, and because of that, we enjoy this opportunity to recognize those that go above and beyond to assist and help in making our communities safer.”