The recently formed Brookhaven Police Foundation is in the midst of raising $100,000 to help support the city’s police officers and their families.
J.D. Clockadale, president of the foundation and Brookhaven’s former interim deputy city manager in 2012-13, said since the board formed in late August, more than $5,000 has been raised for the foundation. Forming an official nonprofit organization is a way for the community to have a place to donate to thank the police department for its service, he said.
“Probably the best thing about our city is our police department, and this is a great chance to return the favor in a more organized effort,” he said.
Clockadale said he and the 13-member board envision the Brookhaven Police Foundation as becoming similar to the Atlanta Police Foundation.
The Brookhaven foundation’s primary goals include: purchasing and donating equipment, facilities and property to the Brookhaven Police Department; providing volunteers for community support of law enforcement activities; providing funds for equipment, training and education for officers; to meet the emergency needs of police personnel; and to provide a separate scholarship fund for college education for sworn police officers and their children.
Police Chief Gary Yandura has praised the nonprofit foundation during recent council meetings, saying officers welcome the recognition and the opportunity for their children to earn tuition money through the foundation’s scholarship program.
The foundation got its early start when several members of the community started a golf tournament three years ago to raise funds for scholarships for officers and their family members, Clockadale said.
The annual golf tournament will continue next year, but it will now fall under the umbrella of the foundation rather than remaining its own entity, he said.
City residents have and continue to hold numerous block parties and cookouts and children have set up lemonade stands in their neighborhood to raise money for the police department. Families and restaurants also continually buy food for officers on different shifts to show their appreciation.
Clockadale said the foundation now provides a one-stop shop for these donations to go rather than the police department dealing with individual checks, for example.
“In the past there has been nowhere official for people to make donations and we wanted to give people an outlet to give,” he said.
“We also coordinate with the police department on their needs to make sure donations are spent wisely,” said Clockadale.
Board members include Clockadale; Josh Cobb, vice president; Fred Andrew, treasurer; Stuart Marsden, secretary; Bill Brown; Steve Wallace; Cassandra Bryant; Tiffany Cox; John Funny; Jed Beardsley; Jonathan Byrd; Collette McDonald; and Stan Sands.
Donations can be made by mailing checks payable to “The Brookhaven Police Foundation” to 3198 Silver Lake Drive NE, Brookhaven, GA 30319 or online at paypal.me/BPDFoundation.