Police Week Spotlight: Officer Dustin Smith

By Bonnie Koenig DLA Aviation public affairs

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National Police Week 2017 will be celebrated across the country May 15 - 21.

According to policeweek.org, in 1962, President John F. Kennedy proclaimed and designated May 15 as Peace Officers Memorial Day and the week in which that date falls as Police Week. Events have been celebrated since that time to honor police officers who have paid the ultimate sacrifice to serve and protect our nation’s communities.

As part of Police Week observances, Defense Logistics Agency Aviation and DLA Installation Support at Richmond, Virginia, spotlight Police Officers who selflessly secures and protects Defense Supply Center Richmond, its people and our neighbors every day.

Name: Officer Dustin Smith

How long have you been in law enforcement?
I’ve been in law enforcement for four and a half years.

What made you decide to go into law enforcement and public service?

I wanted to serve and protect my country and the community I live in.

What is your most memorable event from your job as a police officer?

My most memorable moment was when I was stationed at Bolling Air Force Base in Washington District of Columbia. I was working at one of the gates one night and a man drove up so intoxicated he thought it was a toll-booth, and tried to hand me 50 cents. I then performed the standard field sobriety tests on him in which he passed with no mistakes. After the tests I said to him, “You did really well on the test, I am impressed!” The funniest part of this story was his condemning response to my statement. “Yea, I always do well on those tests when I am drunk,” he said.

What is your greatest achievement on the job?
So far, my greatest achievement, was when I was in security forces (military police) in the Air Force. One summer I was stationed at the Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado, where I trained Air Force cadets on ground combat tactics. Teaching the Air Force’s future leadership to be good leaders was very rewarding.

What’s the most rewarding thing about being a police officer?

The most rewarding thing to me about being a police officer is knowing I am doing my part in making the world a better and safer place, and that people trust me to keep them safe in their workplace.

Have you had any mentors in your career? If so, how have/did they help?

The mentor that taught me the most was my good friend, Roland Brown. I met Roland in the Air Force in 2008. He had just transferred over from the Army after serving 10 years as an infantry sergeant. He taught me how a true leader should behave. He would always be on the frontline with his fellow officers leading by example. I can’t remember one time he ever put himself before his troops.

How do you define excellence?
Excellence to me is always pushing myself to be better in any way possible, be it mentally, physically or spiritually. Daily, I am always trying to improve upon myself to achieve personal excellence.

What makes for a great day on the job?

A great day is being able to talk with all the different types of people that work at DLA. Everyone is so different and comes from different places and cultures and has different perspectives. In discussions I have on a daily basis with coworkers, they say that working at DLA is fun. People really show their appreciation every day for what we do.

What would you say to someone to encourage them to go into public service?

I would first start off by saying working in a public service role is not for everyone. If you are a person that has a protective type personality and love talking with people, then working in public service is definitely fulfilling and a good fit for you.