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Mary Johnston, Public Safety Officer at SMCM, Honored as Officer of the Year for 2009

June 8, 2010
Press Release #10-119


St. Mary's College of Maryland (SMCM) public safety officer Mary Johnston was recently honored as an Officer of the Year for 2009 in recognition of her dedication and service to the college. Johnston received her award at the Tenth Annual Law Enforcement Appreciation Day, sponsored by the St. Mary's County Government; the Board of County Commissioners for St. Mary's County, Maryland; the Department of Aging; and Triad/Seniors and Law Enforcement Together (S.A.L.T.) Council. 

"Officer Mary is always visible on campus, tirelessly working with our students," said Tom Botzman, vice president of business and finance at SMCM.  "She can be a friend when a student needs someone to talk to, a counselor when some advice is needed, and at the same time is able to work with a student so they can understand the responsibility that comes with being a college student.  Officer Mary inspires each of us and has earned the trust and confidence of the entire campus community.  We are thrilled to see her recognized as one of the finest public safety officers in St. Mary's County."

"Mary is a great person to work with," said Sergeant Tony Brooks, public safety officer at SMCM.  "You don't have to ask her to do something twice.  She loves the students to death and treats them as if they were her own kids.  She has achieved a mutual trust with the students at SMCM, a necessary part of maintaining the safety, health, and welfare of the campus and community." 

Johnston was nominated for the award because of her strong work ethic and approach with members of the college and local community.  She serves as a first responder for sexual assaults on campus and is a member of the Campus Sexual Assault and Relationship Violence Committee.    

St. Mary's College of Maryland, designated the Maryland state honors college in 1992, is ranked one of the best public liberal arts schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, Kiplinger's, and The Princeton Review. Founded in 1840 as Maryland's "monument school" commemorating the state's first capital, SMCM is the state's only public honors college.

More than 2,000 students attend the college, which has the highest four-year graduation rate for all Maryland public colleges and universities. The school's waterfront campus along the St. Mary's River in Southern Maryland is home to the 2010 National Intercollegiate Sailing Association Team champions.