The annual Citizens Academy trip to FBI Headquarters and FBI Academy took place on September 26 – 27, 2018. Graduates also visited the Pentagon and the Pentagon 9/11 Memorial. This year’s trip was held jointly with fellow graduates from FBI Chicago’s Citizens Academy. A total of 36 people attended. The tours were free, but travel, meals, and lodging were at each attendee’s own expense. The overall mood was excitement, amazement, and awe as all were simply honored that the FBI would invest so much time into us and the tour. There was plenty of conversation and laughter and times of solemn introspect during various parts of the tours when there were stories of lives lost in the line of duty. The “FBI Experience” exhibit at Headquarters was a highlight as many expressed what they observed.
The 37th annual LDA Memorial Golf Tournament, in memory of FBI St. Louis SWAT Agent Doug Abram, was held on September 7, 2018, at the Norman K. Probstein Golf Course in Forest Park. The rain held off during the first few hours of the tournament, but Tropical Storm Gordon took over, making the last few holes tough.
After the round of golf, attendees sat down to a fantastic dinner and discussion with new and old friends. A special thank you to St. Johns Bank, World Wide Technology, and members who donated. Our chapter offered its highest support in years. The FBISTLCAAA is responsible for $1,100 in registration fees and the following donations: $3,000 in cash, 2 gun club gift certificates, a golf outing certificate, a PGA golf ball, 6 Cardinals box seats with parking passes, and any amount raised from the upcoming Fall Range Day event.
FBISTLCAAA members attended the annual FBI National CAAA conference Sep 5-7, in San Antonio, Texas. Attendees networked with counterparts and learned about the remarkable work that CAAA chapters are engaged in across the country. The FBI presented the Las Vegas shooting investigation and a public corruption investigation in the Washington, D.C. area. Our Chapter donated a basket of St. Louis BBQ goodies for a silent auction. Overall, the conference helped build relationships and provided everyone with new ideas to create value for chapter members and their communities. Next year’s conference will be held in Houston, Texas.
The FBISTLCAAA held its Annual Meeting for its members on August 14. The events and successes over the past year were shared and members weighed in with ideas on several topics around the coming year’s activities.
With your donations and membership fees, the FBISTLCAAA donated $1,000 towards the purchase of anti-theft devices for cars. A special thank you to an anonymous and generous member who matched our original $500 donation. The donation will pay for devices for roughly four blocks of houses in south city as St. Louis Metropolitan Police goes door-to-door throughout the year to meet with residents. The goal is to help prevent vehicles from getting stolen and used to commit violent crimes.
FBISTLCAAA had a booth at the St. Louis Cardinals’ Redbird Rookies Health Fair on June 23rd. We engaged more than 550 children with temporary tattoos, stickers and activity books while parents learned about the FBI Child ID app and FBI internet safety program for 3rd to 8th graders.
The FBISTLCAAA held a firearms safety events for members. A local Police Chief gave an insightful keynote speech on how he would reinvent law enforcement in today’s age to better serve the community. Afterwards, members were invited to use the simulation shooter or live fire range.
Members of the FBISTLCAAA participated in a Violence Prevention Commission outreach event on Saturday, June 9. The mission was to go door-to-door in the Walnut Park neighborhood to: (1) hear directly from families about the specific resources and basic supports they need; and (2) connect families to resources immediately or through ongoing follow-up and community events.
Volunteers placed door hangers with details about how to access common social services for any unanswered doors. Volunteers also provided customized United Way 211 cards for community members to help them access services. Volunteers worked with 211 staff on-site to help connect community members with resources for immediate needs.
The FBI gave FBISTLCAAA members a behind-the-scenes look at the Orlando Pulse Nightclub shooting from an investigator’s standpoint. Participants learned how the situation unfolded, the suspect’s behavior before and during the event, and the challenges law enforcement encountered throughout the investigation. It was a very insightful overview of the horrific event and tremendous response and support from local and federal law enforcement. In addition, the FBI recognized three out-going Board members (George Wilder, Norm Appelman, and Rick Heinrichs) for their self-less service to the FBISTLCAAA Board and helping the community.
The FBI St. Louis office taught a 7-session course on Introduction to Law Enforcement to 10th graders at the Northwest Academy of Law High School in St. Louis from February 27, 2018, through April 17, 2018. The students learned through the practical exercise of investigating a bank robbery, and FBISTLCAAA volunteers helped by playing the role of a key witness or assisting with processing a crime scene, etc. In addition to teaching the ins and outs of investigative work, the teaching team showed students the various careers in law enforcement available to them and a path to get there. The graduation event was May 2. Of those who graduated, four students (randomly chosen by drawing) won tablets that the FBISTLCAAA donated.