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THP graduates 56 state troopers

On March 4, Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security Commissioner Jeff Long and Tennessee Highway Patrol (THP) Colonel Matt Perry welcomed the newest graduating classes of Tennessee State Troopers. The department simultaneously instructed a regular 16-week trooper cadet class and a 10-week lateral trooper cadet class. The lateral class returned from their district assignments for the graduation ceremony that took place at the Hermitage Hills Baptist Church on Lebanon Road in Nashville. To view highlights of the class during their academy, click here<https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfPDsTEpfdM&feature=youtu.be>.

The 46 graduates of Trooper Cadet Class 1021 included five prior law enforcement officers, 14 cadets with prior military service, six cadets with Associate’s degrees, 19 cadets with Bachelor’s degrees and one cadet with a Master’s degree.

Lateral Trooper Cadet Class 921 graduated 10 trooper cadets composed of all prior Police Officer Standards and Training (POST) certified law enforcement officers. Class 921 had two cadets with Bachelor’s degrees and one with a Master’s degree.

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Some of the new troopers will be assigned to counties in our listening area. Trooper Micah Keele is assigned to Bedford County and trooper Hunter Lawson to Franklin County.

Governor Lee served as the keynote speaker during the graduation ceremony, and Commissioner Jeff Long swore in the new troopers as they delivered their oaths of office.

“Law enforcement is a calling, and I commend Tennessee’s newest trooper class for their commitment to protect and serve their fellow Tennesseans,” said Governor Bill Lee. “The Tennessee Highway Patrol plays an essential role in ensuring public safety, and I remain dedicated to supporting them with strong investments in high-quality training, recruitment and the resources needed to keep our communities safe.”

“Each one of you earned this incredible honor of being chosen to serve as a Tennessee state trooper,” said Commissioner Jeff Long. “You now rank among the best of the best. Congratulations on your graduation and you will be a representative for Tennessee’s finest.”

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“This class has presented you with some unique challenges, and throughout your career, you will continue to be challenged,” said Colonel Matt Perry. He reminded the graduates that adversity comes with the job and challenged them to rise to the adversities they will face. He continued, telling the newest members of the Highway Patrol, “You no longer serve only yourself; you serve the citizens of the state of Tennessee and those that travel to and through our state.”

Cadet Class #1021 hosted a blood drive with American Red Cross and Blood Assurance. They also collected money to donate to Waverly Police Chief Grant Gillespie to help with flood recovery efforts in Humphreys County as part of their class project.

Bethel University presented a $5,000 scholarship to Trooper Bailey Williams. Trooper Williams will serve at the Nashville District.

Trooper James Roark of class 1021 was named the top cadet for his class and was presented with the Trooper Calvin Jenks Memorial Award for Excellence for his leadership, work ethic and academics. The award was named in honor of the late Trooper Calvin Jenks, who was killed in the line of duty in January 2007.

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