Southwestern Illinois College President
Georgia Costello, Ph.D., received the Presidential Award from the Southwestern
Illinois Law Enforcement Commission and Southern Illinois Police Chiefs
Association at a ceremony Wednesday evening at the Four Points Sheraton in
SILEC and SIPCA hold an awards banquet once a year to
honor law enforcement employees, civic leaders and community residents for
their support of law enforcement.
"This is truly an honor. We all owe a
debt of gratitude to the men and women in law enforcement who lay their lives
on the line for our safety every day," Costello said. "As the wife and mother
of former officers, I know all too well the challenges peace officers
Costello's husband, former U.S. Congressman Jerry Costello, and
son, Illinois Rep. Jerry Costello II, both served as peace officers in St.
Clair County. Both also received law enforcement training from the college:
Congressman Costello earned an Administration of Justice certificate and Rep.
Costello graduated from the Police Academy. In addition, the Congressman's
father, Dan Costello, served as St. Clair County sheriff from 1966-1970.
The Southwestern Illinois Police Academy at SWIC is one of only six
academies in the state.
President Costello has made serving the law
enforcement community and the Police Academy a priority at the college. Since
her appointment in 2008, she has:
- Negotiated an intergovernmental
agreement with the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board to
allow police agencies to send new officers to the Police Academy without the
financial burden of paying tuition.
- Negotiated the transfer of the 80
Hour Transition Course and the Basic Arson Investigator Course from other
academies to SWIC.
- Updated Police Academy facilities, including a
computer classroom, a scenario training house and a paved running track.
- Ensured that SWIC facilities are made available to law enforcement at all
campuses including state-of-the-art lecture halls, classrooms and fitness
- Welcomed SILEC's Project 16 and resources for the driving
simulator to the SWIC Belleville Campus. Also, permanently located the PRISm
Shooting System at the campus with round-the-clock access for peace officers'
- Regularly attended Police Academy graduations and always
sends new officers off with a message of safety.
- Received the
Governor's Award for Excellence in Education for veterans programs that go
above and beyond basic services. SWIC serves the largest population of
student veterans and active duty military of any Illinois public
"Future generations of law enforcement officers can
thank Dr. Costello for her commitment and leadership because she truly
understands how important it is for peace officers to go home safe and sound
to their families every night," said Police Academy Director Van
For more information about the Southwestern Illinois Police
Academy, visit swic.edu/police
or southwesternpoliceacademy.com, or call 618-235-2700, ext.