UTICA, N.Y. (WUTR-TV) — Each year the city of Utica celebrates the police and fire departments with an Officer of the Year ceremony. The event was coordinated by Mayor Robert Palmieri, Police Chief Mark Williams, Fire Chief Scott Ingersoll and members of American Legion Post 229. Due to COVID-19, this year’s event was modified.
“Normally we would honor the police at a dinner meeting at the post but of course everything was shut down and we just couldn’t do it. So, we figured we would still at least honor the fire and policeman at some kind of a ceremony. I was able to set this up with the help of the police chief and the mayor.” Paul Wojcik , Law and Order Chairman, American Legion Post 229
Supervisors in each department nominate officers, then the chief of fire and police will take these nominations to the post 229 where they decide which officers win the award. This year both fire and police each honored two officers. The police awarded United States Marshal Gregory Morawiec and Investigator William (Billy) Williams. The fire department awarded Lieutenant William Scherer and Firefighter Esher Kenyaw.
“Investigators Morawiec and investigators Williams. They are assigned to our warrants division and they go after the worse of the worse. The fugitives that either leave the city or are within the city, and because of the relationship they have within the city, they’re very capable and successful in getting those fugitives into custody. They have a good way about themselves.” – Police Chief Mark Williams, Utica Police Department
“We respond to slightly over 14,000 calls a year and these two gentleman always exhibit the highest qualities of what we come to expect from the Utica Fire Department. We expect excellence and we expect them to know their job and be on point and these two individuals are always on point.” – Fire Chief Scott Ingersoll, Utica Fire Department