Clermont Police Officer David Colon was recognized as the 2018 National Hometown Heroes Leif Erikson Award for his tremendous and positive impact on the Clermont community.
Officer Colon was chosen from hundreds of local heroes and community leaders across the U.S. to become the role model of the year. Under the leadership of Police Chief Charles Broadway and the City of Clermont, Officer Colon, a community leader, spearheaded the turnaround of one of the most crime-ridden communities in Clermont, Oakhurst. The efforts changed it into a nearly crime-free neighborhood through a citywide effort in which police, residents and volunteers worked together to beautify the neighborhood, encourage a sense of community and secure a safe, friendly environment.
“With his strong dedication and a lifetime of caring for others, David has both changed the lives of many and also shown what monumental achievements are possible in any high crime community when everyone works together,” said Christian Schoyen, chairman/founder of Neighborhood Rescue of America.
Officer Colon’s efforts helped directly influence a crime reduction of over 90 percent in an area that was the highest in calls for service for over five years.
The 2018 Hometown Heroes Leif Erikson Awards is presented by Neighborhood Rescue of America, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that is dedicated to assisting cities by way of sharing their proven crime reduction blueprint. This model outlines steps to success and supports police departments and community leaders in their efforts to reduce crime.
The organization annually honors extraordinary individuals who have shown embedded life traits of selfless acts in serving their communities and who have shown a strong positive social impact. The award is specific to socially conscious individuals and companies exhibiting Viking traits.
Chief Broadway said the award was a wonderful acknowledgment of the project and how lives were changed. “This award is a result of the efforts of the men and women of the Clermont Police Department working with the community to identify issues and adopt community-policing strategies to reduce crime and enhance the quality of life while building and maintaining trust,” Broadway said.
The Oakhurst Project also won the City of Clermont the 2018 City Spirit Award from the 10th Annual Florida Municipal Achievement Awards and the 2018 Florida Crime Prevention Unit of the Year Award from the Florida Crime Prevention Association (FCPA).
Officer Colon personified the Clermont Police Department’s core values of Courage, Honor, Integrity, Professionalism, and Service Above Self. We would like to publicly congratulate him for a well-deserved recognition!