Department names 2015 Officer of the Year

Scott Vierk known for keeping streets safe

By: Victoria Mitchell | Royal Oak Review | Published March 15, 2016

 Clawson Police Department 2015 Officer of the Year Scott Vierk is known for his community policing and keeping impaired drivers off the streets.

Clawson Police Department 2015 Officer of the Year Scott Vierk is known for his community policing and keeping impaired drivers off the streets.

Photo by Victoria Mitchell

Advertisement

CLAWSON — Two out of the past three years have been winners for police officer Scott Vierk.

Vierk joined the Clawson Police Department three years ago and learned the job well enough to win the department’s top honors for the past two years.

Vierk was named the 2015 Officer of the Year, an honor he also took for 2014.

“It is a great honor,” he said. “It’s nice to be recognized for all of the hard work that you do, but it really could be any one of us. We have a great department.”

Vierk said he was initially drawn to Clawson because of what he’s learned about the city, its small-town feel and residents’ support of its police department.

After completing the extensive interview process, he was pleased to be offered and to accept the position.

“I like the small-town policing. You get a more personal attachment to the city because you learn the residents and business owners more so than you would working for a larger city,” he said. “Clawson has a very good group of people working for the police department, and the residents have always supported and appreciated us.”

Vierk said he transitioned to the Clawson department after gaining 10 years of experience working elsewhere, and he wanted to make sure he found the department from which he would retire.

He is known in the community for his proactive policing philosophy.

“I like to be out in the community being visible at all times,” he said. “I believe that the more we are seen driving through the community or making traffic stops on the main roadways, it all helps to deter crime. 

“The crime rate in Clawson reflects this philosophy, as we are continually rated as one of the safest cities in the state.”

Normally working the midnight shift, Vierk has a strong record of arrests of those driving under the influence.

Police Chief Harry Anderson said Vierk shows exceptional dedication to the department.

“Officer Vierk has been a leader in self-initiated activity and regularly practices proactive policing,” Anderson said. “In 2015, officer Vierk led the department in OWI arrests, tickets and still handled his calls for service in a professional manner.”

The officer said he has always been a strong advocate against drunken driving and wants to keep residents safe.

“Drunk and drugged driving is a large problem facing all communities.” he said. “Early on in my career I responded to a fatal crash involving a child that was a victim of drunk driving. That day left an impression upon me. I have always focused on taking as many intoxicated drivers off the roadway as I can.”

Vierk said the bigger trend that officers are seeing now is drivers impaired by illicit drugs and even by abusing prescription medications, which he said is as dangerous as abusing alcohol.

“Every intoxicated driver taken off the roadway could be saving a life, whether it be their own or an innocent victim,” he said.

Vierk was nominated for the honor by his peers, and all nominations were considered by the Clawson Police Department Awards Board, which ultimately chooses the winners.

“Members of the department are encouraged to submit recommendations whenever they believe that members of the department have performed acts that should be recognized formally,” Anderson said.

Vierk was described by his peers as “professional,” “responsible,” “hardworking” and “reliable.”

Anderson said Officer of the Year is based on more than a single act, but rather is based on overall performance throughout the year.

“An Officer of the Year is an officer who sets a good example of what a Clawson police officer should be,” he said. “He or she should be that person that you say, ‘This is the ideal person. This is what I want my department to be made up of.’”

Advertisement