As part of the 50th Anniversary celebration, the College of Criminal Justice will continue its traditions of honoring outstanding students, alumni and supporters, as well as those who have lost their lives in the line of duty.
The Leadership Luncheon pays tribute to the executive boards of criminal justice student organizations as well as distinguished scholars in the graduate program. In addition, the College will bestow awards for Outstanding Alumnus to Ronald B. Turk (’88), Acting Deputy Director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Washington, D.C, as well as the Defensor Pacem to Professor Emeritus Dr. Jerry Dowling for his outstanding contributions to the field of criminal justice.
The College will highlight the achievements of eight criminal justice organizations on campus, including Alpha Phi Sigma, Lambda Alpha Epsilon, National Association of Blacks in Criminal Justice, Society of Forensic Science, Phi Alpha Delta, Crime Victim Services Alliance, Graduate Student Organization and National Organization of Hispanics in Criminal Justice.
Distinguished Alumnus Turk oversees all field operations for the ATF in Washington, D.C. and was nominated to become a Brigadier General in the U.S. Air National Guard. He was recognized for leading troops in protecting the Bagdad Airport during the Iraq War. Turk also was involved in the investigation of the Boston Marathon bombing, is involved in high profile inspections of gun retailers, and works on developing intelligence on gun crime issues.
Dr. Dowling, who retired as a professor at the College of Criminal Justice in 2014, is a former FBI agent who joined the faculty in 1972. In addition to educating generations of law enforcement professionals, Dr. Dowling was instrumental in developing licensing and professional exams for police officers across the country. Along with Dr. Larry Hoover, Dr. Dowling wrote the first licensing exam for peace officers in Texas and Illinois and developed curriculum for basic police training in Texas, Illinois, New York and Maine. He also is responsible for the training used for jailers at the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement and for school resource officers in Kentucky. Finally, he worked at the Bill Blackwood Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas as an instructor, providing classes on legal liability and labor relations for professionals in the field.
In addition to the awards, the College also will posthumously recognize David W. Crews, a Texas legislator who sponsored the bill that created the Institute of Contemporary Corrections and the Behavioral Sciences, the predecessor to the College, more than five decades ago.
Following the Leadership Luncheon, the College will honor the field's fallen heroes at the Sundial Ceremony, an annual event where faculty, staff, students and visitors participate in a ceremony recognizing the ultimate sacrifice in the service of criminal justice.
The evening Honors Convocation recognizes outstanding undergraduate and graduate students at the College. The College will award 43 scholarships to 76 students, which includes nine 100 Club Awards and five Deans’ Scholarships. This year, there were five new scholarships, including the Chief Charles W. Tackett Memorial Scholarship in honor of the former SHSU University Police Chief; the Texas Ranger Law Enforcement Association Scholarship recognizing the contribution of SHSU alumni to the elite state law enforcement division; athe Richard and Michelle Ward CJ Endowment Scholarship in honor of former Dean Ward; the Professor Jerry L. Dowling Scholarship for Exemplary Achievement in Criminal Law in honor of SHSU Professor Emeritus Dowling; and the Logan Bennett-Lyons Criminal Justice Scholarship established by Eric Bennett and Interim Dean Phillip Lyons.
During the Honors Convocation, the College also will recognize 253 student for their academic achievements this year at the College of Criminal Justice.