Executive Board Elections 2017

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Executive Board Elections 2017

2017-12-13T11:16:09+00:00 December 4th, 2017|Conversation, From the President|Comments Off on Executive Board Elections 2017

In December of every odd year, the membership elects an Executive Board for a two-year term.  The Board is tasked with the business operations and strategic planning for the lodge.  As leaders of the Lodge, these men and woman volunteer countless hours to the Order.

Nominations were held during the November meeting which allows candidates an opportunity to speak with the membership prior to elections.

Some positions only received a single nomination; therefore, those candidates will be elected by acclamation.  The other positions which received more than one nomination will be decided by an election.  Any active member who is present at the December meeting is eligible to vote.  Absentee ballots and proxy votes are not allowed.  Voting will commence at 8:00 pm time certain and the polls will close at 8:30 pm.  Any member in line at 8:30 pm will be allowed to vote; however, no member will be allowed to enter the voting line after 8:30 pm.

Seated without opposition were President John Blackmon (i), Vice President Eddie Draper (i), Membership Secretary Pam Nelson, Treasurer Scott Rywelski (i), and Second Vice President Mike Kornahrens.

Contested positions are Recording Secretary and Sergeant at Arms.  Aaron Reed (i) and Reggie Sharpe are vying for the position of Recording Secretary.  Gary Zimmer and Travis Dodd are on the ballot for the Sergeant at Arms position.

Incumbent Second Vice President Beth Auer and Sergeant at Arms Ed Semlitsch did not seek re-election.


President John Blackmon
I have been honored to serve this great organization since 2003, first as Vice President and then for the last six years as President.  I am again honored to be reelected as President for a fourth term. Filling the shoes of the great men who led this organization before me has been no easy task.  However, I have delved my heart and soul into our lodge – the largest FOP lodge in the State.

Our lodge has continued to grow each year.  We have expanded benefit offerings to members.  We have sought out other revenue streams.  We have continued to be the shining beacon for law enforcement professionals in the Lowcountry.  We will continue to shine.  We will continue to improve.  We will continue to serve the law officers of the Lowcountry.

Thank you for your continued support.

Vice President Ed Draper
My name is Eddie Draper and I am seeking election to the position of Vice President for Tri-County FOP Lodge #3. I am currently a sworn law enforcement officer with the North Charleston Police Department and a member of the Neighborhood Resource Officer Unit with sixteen years of law enforcement experience. During the last two years I have served our membership as a board member, first as lodge Chaplain, then 2nd Vice President and finally as Vice President. Each position has been a challenge in its own way and for each I have sought to do my very best for our membership, the Fraternal Order of Police and our honorable profession. Our lodge has prospered and grown tremendously throughout the years and I believe our best days are before us. From honoring our fallen officers through our memorial each May to recognizing the achievements of local officers and supporting officers and members in need through the distressed officers fund, Tri-County FOP Lodge #3 has been a tremendous support system for our profession. As lodge Vice President I will strive to see our lodge continue to prosper and grow and that our membership and the men and women of law enforcement continue to receive the support they deserve as members of this noble profession. Thank you for your consideration and I look forward to serving our membership to the best of my ability as our lodge Vice President.
Membership Secretary Pam Nelson
I have been a member of the lodge since early 2006 when I was hired by Hanahan police department. I have stayed with the department for all these years and my membership with the lodge has remained active since then as well.

I look forward to working for the members with this newly created position. I hope to keep membership organized and easy to track.

Recording Secretary Candidate Aaron Reed
To all members of the Tri-County FOP #3, I would like to take a moment and tell you how honored I have been over the last year to serve as your secretary.  It definitely came with a great learning curve, which I accepted with open arms.  Now, with almost a year experience, I believe I have a firm grasp of the position and willing to take it to the next level over the next two years.  I was very humbled when the board asked me earlier in the year to step into the vacant position and now I am asking to have the blessing of you, the members of the lodge, to continue in this endeavor.   I have been a member for nearly 10 years and have been active in the lodge since the first month.  This is an Awesome organization and one that impacts every officer, whether a member or not.  I truly believe in what we do and hope you put your trust in me to continue our mission. 
Recording Secretary Candidate Reggie Sharpe
I am seeking the office of Secretary for the South Carolina Fraternal Order of Police Tri-County Lodge #3. I have been behind a badge since 1993, serving as a Reserve Deputy, Detention Officer, Deputy Sheriff and the last five years as Police Officer. The bulk of my law enforcement work has been spent hunting down “wanted” people. I have received national as well as local acclaim for my efforts and hold the United States record for warrant service.Police work is my vocation and my love. I gave six years of my life to this lodge as its Secretary for three terms in the early 2000s – when membership was less than 100 members at start. When I left the office – membership was above 800. A period of member confidence which I take great pride in having played a significant part.My contributions to this organization remain visible to this day. I acquired, framed and hung most of the artwork that adorns the lodge throughout. The “patch border” was my idea, design and build (with affirmative member vote of course.) In collaboration with John Blackmon and Danny Isgett, I helped create what would become known as the “Distressed Officer Fund.” A project that supersedes all other accomplishments and one that I pray will outlive us all.By admission, I have been deemed an “odd sort” in polite words. I enjoy writing, history, poetry and at times have been met with consternation by colleagues and superiors. Having said that, my blood truly runs blue and I would be honored to have the chance once again to give back to the profession that has given so much to me. I respectfully ask for your vote. Should I fail in my bid, I pledge to fully support the other candidate as I know his heart too, is in the right place.
Treasurer Scott Rywelski
I would like to thank you all for the past six years for allowing me to serve this great order. Now with your blessings and votes, I am embarking on my 4th term as an eboard officer for this great lodge. My promise to the board and the members is to continue to serve this great order and to uphold the bylaws, the commitment to the Lawmen of the Lowcountry and to ensure that the order’s interests are best served and protected. I look forward to more great, hard work being put forth by myself and the board for the lodge and our great law enforcement community.
Second Vice President Elect Mike Kornahrens
I have been in LE since 2006 and with North Charleston for 10 years. I have been the our Lodge’s liasion for N Charleston PD since the program started. I will continue the hard work as the Lodge’s 2nd Vice President that I put into the liason position.
Outgoing Second Vice President Beth Auer
No Report
Outgoing Sergeant At Arms Ed Semlitsch
About a year and half ago, the Executive Board was going through some transitions and John Blackmon asked me to come back to the Eboard. I was honored to be asked and accepted the responsibility.

During this term on the EBoard I assisted in accomplishing many projects. The maintenance of the lodge is ongoing and never-ending work. With the assistance of the membership, the lawn was kept mowed and there were several improvements. Exterior lighting, exterior signs, and push bars on the doors were added to improve the lodge. I greatly appreciated the assistance from the members who volunteered their time with these projects.

During 2017, I coordinated two funding events for the lodge, The 3rd Annual Deputy Joe Matuskovic Memorial Hockey Game and the 911 Memorial Hockey Game. These events were a lot of work however, I accepted the challenge. As a result of these events over $11,000 was raised for the lodge and our partner charities.

In total, I have served on the EBoard for approximately five and half years. I enjoyed my time on the EBoard however, like all of us; I have many responsibilities with family and work. We are a lodge of almost 1000 members and I believe every member should have an opportunity to serve on the EBoard. Therefore, I decided not to run for reelection. I believe there are two outstanding candidates running for my position. Either person would make a great addition to the Eboard.

Even though I will no longer be on the EBoard, I still plan to be active with the lodge. I plan to continue the hockey games and assist with maintenance and repairs of the building.

It was a pleasure serving the membership on the EBoard and I look forward to seeing everyone at future lodge meetings and events.

Sergeant At Arms Candidate Travis Dodd
First I would like to thank the membership for the opportunity to continue to serve this wonderful organization.

I have been a member of Lodge #3 since the beginning of my career in 2006. It was shortly after that I began serving on various committees to include merchandise, Law Enforcement Appreciation Night and Cops and Calabash (formerly Cops and Lobsters).

I served as Lodge secretary for 3 terms before being elected by the E-board to fill the open Vice President position. During my time on the board, I helped in the responsibility of protecting and maintaining our one true asset, the lodge building itself. I assisted in upgrades and routine maintenance that not only made our building safer but also made it more functional to better serve you the members.

I look forward to continuing serving this wonderful organization as your Sgt. at Arms and look forward to your support December 11th.

Sergeant At Arms Candidate Gary Zimmer
I have been a Law Enforcement officer for the past 23 years, starting as a reserve officer with Goose Creek Police and then serving with the North Charleston Police for the past 20 years. During my career, I have served on a number of boards for Law Enforcement Organizations. I served as the training secretary for the South Carolina Juvenile Officers Association, A founding board member of the South Carolina Gang Investigators Association and the committee member of the East Coast Gang Investigators Association. I have dedicated myself to the profession and the professionals’ in our chosen careers.I am the current coordinator for the Christmas Morning Toys For Tots deliveries in the tri-county area. Through the coalition of officers and agencies that I have been able to coordinate we have increased the effectiveness of this community service group over the past 10 years. We have increased our volunteers from a beginning group of 10 officers and TV personalities making deliveries to 20 families; becoming a dedicated group of 300 volunteers and 50 Public Safety professionals who are able to deliver toys to 300 families and 1000 children on Christmas Morning, covering the tri-county area now.This is the type of dedication and professionalism that I will bring to FOP Lodge 3. As your Sergent at Arms, I will be dedicated to improving our facility and providing the security and support to the entire lodge. I was pleased to fill in as Sergent at Arms when our current Sergent at Arms was unavailable due to job-related requirements, during this past year. Being present and assisting in our functions is what allows the fraternal nature of our organization to thrive. By maintaining and hopefully improving this fraternity of Police Professionals our Lodge will continue to grow and remain the Leader in South Carolina.I look forward to your support and thank you for your vote of confidence.
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John Blackmon

A retired law enforcement officer who now serves as the President of the Fraternal Order of Police Tri-County Lodge #3.
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