Elkhart County Sheriff's Department

Employee Recognition

Service Awards - Recognizing Continuous Years of Service

40 Year Milestone:

Diana Hoke began her 40 years with the County on July 16, 1975. She started out as a Clerk at the Sheriff’s Department, but soon transferred to dispatch. At the time, dispatchers were merit officers and were required to attend Indiana Law Enforcement Academy. Diana graduated from the 45th class. Diana was given the choice to become a Patrol Officer or stay a dispatcher, after graduation. Diane decided to stay a dispatcher and continued in that position for 27 years. In 2003, then Sheriff Mike Books, asked Diana to become his Administrative Assistant and she has been in that position ever since. Diana stays with the County because she is happy in her work. Things have really changed since she began in 1975. At that time, women wore skirts to work with quasi-military hats and purses with sewn in gun holsters. They had map books that were called “X books” to note calls for their shift and used County and City directories to pinpoint a calls location based on telephone number prefix. No computer aided dispatch back then! Diana has many memorable experiences in her 40 years, some good and some bad. Diana notes the Nu-Wood shooting and the murder of Tom Goodwin, as bad experiences for her. “There were many calls where I felt helpless and frustrated that I couldn’t help or get help faster to people in need”. There were good experiences as well, “Meeting the woman who gave her husband CPR at my instructions and the man who survived his heart attack as a result was a great experience. Giving childbirth instructions over the phone and then hearing the cries of the baby was an amazing experience.” However, her most memorable experience was “contacting Gary Kenawell, Investigator at the Prosecuting Attorney’s office, about a cold case after receiving a phone call from the victim. The case was re-opened, an arrest was made, and an appropriate sentence was handed down. The victim is truly a survivor and gained much deserved closure.” Diana also notes Gary Kenawell and Bill Fletcher as memorable co-workers that “were great to work for and always took the time to answer questions. They took their work seriously, but were a lot of fun as well.” Diana plans to retire June 1st of this year and is looking forward to having her days to herself to do whatever she wants!

 

‚Äč25 Year Milestone:

James W. Brosius began his career on July 16, 1990, as a Corrections Officer with the Sheriff's Department where he has also served as a Court Officer, Court Security Officer, and Transportation Officer. He shared that one of his most memorable experiences involved snowballs being thrown at the Goshen squad cars from the roof of the old jail. Jim can "neither confirm or deny participation" in that event. He notes among his most memorable supervisors or co-workers Sergeant Ramijio Salazar, Lieutenant Fred Call, and Corporal Jim Smith. He stated that technology has greatly increased in the time he has been with the Sheriff's Department and that he stays for the stability the job provides. Jim is married to his wife, Jenny, and they have two dogs, a Labrador named Maggie and a German Shepherd named Jerry Lee. He also shared, "thanks to the Sheriff's Department for putting up with me for 25 years."

 

Tina S. Keim is the Jail Capacity Coordinator with the Sheriff's Department. She began her 25 years of service to the County on June 14, 1990.

 

 

 

 

 

Andy Montandon is a Corrections Officer with the Sheriff's Department. He began his 25 years of service to the County on September 17, 1990. Andy shared that he has "stayed so long because the Sheriff's Department has been like family."

 

 

 

 

 

Craig Polachek began at the Sheriff's Department on May 7, 1990. He started as a Jail Officer and was the first one to be selected to be a Firearm's Instructor. He then transferred to Work Release and remained there until he was selected to be a Patrol Officer. He also served as a D.A.R.E. Officer, full-time Instructor, and worked in the detail section of Patrol serving eviction notices for a short time until he retired from his Merit position and transferred to the Mechanics Department. He counts among his most memorable experiences being able to train his son to become a Patrol Officer prior to retirement and then building his first (and second) squad cars. Craig came to County Government because he, "wanted to be part of something bigger than one's self." He credits Lon Smith as the most knowledgeable person he has ever met sharing that his, "intergrity and friendship still serve as an inspiration to me." Craig shared that his hobbies include anything with triggers and tires. He married his wife in 1975 after proposing to her at their high school prom. They, "prayed for patience and were blessed with two boys. Proof that God has a sense of humor and does answer prayer." Craig is, " heartened and honored that I work and associate with the highest caliber of people in the world."

 

 

 

 

 

Other Notable Milestones:

Brian Holloman 20 Year Milestone
Joseph Pinch 20 Year Milestone
Kenneth Saeger 20 Year Milestone
Ryan Hubbell 15 Year Milestone
Evan Boggs 10 Year Milestone
Scott Eisenhour 10 Year Milestone
Eric Fisette 10 Year Milestone
Casey Lehman  10 Year Milestone
Eric Dilley 5 Year Milestone
Michael Huddleston 5 Year Milestone

 

Employees With 25 or More Years of Continuous Service:

Lon A Smith 41 Years
Diana L. Hoke 40 Years
Charles E. Payne 40 Years
Randall L. Cripe 37 Years
Susan G. Graves 37 Years
Randy K. Mockler 37 Years
Fred E. Mock 33 Years
Mary E. Letherman 32 Years
Don C Cramer 31 Years
John G Perry 31 Years
Jayna K. Chenoweth 28 Years
Bradley D. Rogers 28 Years
James B. Smith 28 Years
James L Bradberry 26 Years
Ron L Harvey 26 Years