The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) has recognized the University of Tennessee Law Enforcement Innovation Center’s (LEIC) National Forensic Academy (NFA) with its 2007 August Vollmer Excellence in Forensic Science Award.
LEIC Executive Director Daniel L. Baker accepted the award at the IACP Annual Conference in New Orleans in October. Also present were acting U.S. Assistant Attorney General Cybele Daley for the Office of Justice Programs and Knoxville Police Chief Sterling Owen IV, who nominated the NFA for the award.
The International Association of Chiefs of Police recognizes the significant impact forensic science has on the criminal justice system, and the August Vollmer Excellence in Forensic Science Award honors proactive, innovative use of forensic technologies by law enforcement. The NFA was recognized in the category of current or past contribution to forensic science by a police agency.
A leading figure in the development of the field of criminal justice in the United States in the early 20th century, August Vollmer was also the first police chief of Berkeley, Calif.
Chaired by Chief Bill Berger of Palm Bay, Fla., the Forensic Awards Committee commended the NFA "for its successful work training law enforcement across the United States."
"This award honors the name of August Vollmer and his contributions to law enforcement and forensic science," Berger said. "In the spirit of his contributions to our profession, the National Forensic Academy is recognized for the outstanding achievements it has accomplished on behalf of the law enforcement profession and the citizens we serve."
The NFA serves law enforcement agencies nationwide through a 10-week academy in Knoxville and nearly a dozen one-week traveling courses on forensic topics. In 2007, the NFA offered pilot courses on crime scene investigation for corrections officials. Initiatives are under way to implement a cold case review process and to host informative conferences and symposiums.
The NFA partners with UT Knoxville faculty for instruction and research facilities. After completing the 10-week academy, NFA alumni return to their jobs as crime scene investigators better prepared to collect evidence and process crime scenes. Alumni continuously benefit from relationships with fellow alumni and NFA instructors throughout their careers in law enforcement. The NFA is funded by the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance.