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Correctional Officers Receive Medal of Valor Award

2015 Corrections USA Medal of Valor Awardees:

  • Officer Raymond Calderon, New York City Department of Corrections
  • Sergeant Sean Copeland, California Department Of Corrections
  • Officer Richard L. Glassman, California Department of Corrections
  • Officer Charles Stonehill, New Jersey Department Of Corrections
  • Officer Vincent Canonica, New Jersey Department Of Corrections
  • Officer Todd Feuster, New Jersey Department of Corrections

2015 Corrections USA Image Award:

  • New Jersey Department of Corrections - Joseph Socolof

2015 Corrections USA Civilian of Year Award:

  • Ryann Greenberg - Florida

2015 Corrections USA Organizational Leader of Year Award

  • New Jersey PBA Local 105 - Lance Lopez

2015 Corrections USA Richard Harcrow Award:

  • Oliver Burns - Michigan

2015 Corrections USA Correctional Facility Award for Excellence:

  • Lovelock Correctional Center - Nevada

Corrections USA Lifetime Achievement Award:

  • Michael Jimenez-California

Information on Award Winners:

2015 Corrections USA Medal of Valor Officer Raymond Calderon, New York City Department of Corrections

Correctional Officer Raymond Calderon was brutally slashed by one inmate while another held him down on a cell floor Thursday night, according to multiple sources. Officer Raymond Calderon was taken to New York Hospital Queens after the attack at the George Motchan Detention Center on Rikers Island. The assault began when one inmate asked Calderon to open his cell door. When Calderon did, the inmate put him into a chokehold and threw him to the floor. Another inmate came into the cell and began to slash his face.Calderon fought back and suffered a cut to his wrist, as well as a gash a quarter of an inch away from his eye. Both inmates are said to be teens and Bloods members.

2015 Corrections USA Medal of Officer Richard Glassman and Sean Copeland, California Department of Corrections
The two YCCs were involved in a serious assault at the Ventura facility. YCC Richard Glassman was the target of the unexpected assault which began without warning. On the day of the incident YCC Glassman was asked to take the phone out of the room where it is kept so that the ward could call his mother. YCC Glassman retrieved the phone and a chair for the ward to sit on and had just locked the office door when he was struck from behind. YCC Glassman was immediately struck by another ward from the side and was directed to give up his keys by the assailant. YCC Glassman stated, “You’ll have to kill me because you aren’t getting them,” to which the ward replied, “Then that’s what we’ll do.” That is when the beating really got out of hand. Several wards joined in. In the moments that followed YCC Glassman spoke of how he thought of each key as a value: honesty, integrity, perseverance and the belief of good over evil. “There was no way they were going to take those things away from me,” said YCC Glassman. Thankfully, amidst the chaos, YCC Sean Copeland responded just in time.
YCC Copeland said that when he entered the room he could scarcely believe what he was seeing. When asked what first went through his mind he stated, “I saw his face and I knew that he needed somebody there for him. I thought about if it were me, what would I want somebody to do?” YCC Copeland was able to jump into the melee and keep YCC Glassman from taking any greater abuse until help could arrive. The actions of YCC Copeland may very well have saved Glassman’s life. It was clear that the reality of the moment was not lost on YCC Glassman, who referred to YCC Copeland as “My hero that saved the day.”

2015 Corrections USA Medal of Valor Officer Charles Stonehill and Vincent Canonica, New Jersey Department of Corrections

On August 16, 2015, Correction Officer Recruit Stonehill went into action to help save his partner (Ofc. Canonica) from an attack from several bloods gang members. Officer Canonica was unable to attend this event due to his wife giving birth to their 1st child last week. The details of the incident are: Officer Stonehill only had a few months on the job when he observed Officer Canonica being attacked by inmate gang members. Officer Stonehill showed tremendous bravery while facing imminent danger. Both officers were being punched in the head, kicked, stomped, and tossed to the ground. Although knocked down several times, both officers jumped up each and every time to defend one another and secured the inmates. Both Officers showed bravery and true professional throughout this incident.

2015 Corrections USA Medal of Valor Officer Todd Feuster, New Jersey Juvenile Justice Commission

On Friday morning, December 11th 2015, Senior Correction Officer Todd Feuster, an upstanding Officer of 18 years at the NJ Training School for Boys of the NJ Juvenile Justice Commission was responding to an emergency disturbance code on a housing unit to assist in the non-compliance of two male inmates. While assisting in the restraining of one of these inmates, Officer Feuster was punched several times from behind by the 2nd inmate. As Officer Feuster lay unconscious on the floor, the same inmate continued his assault by stomping and kicking Officer Feuster in the face and head repeatedly; breaking his jaw in two places. While this brutal attack was taking place the remaining 23 inmates cheered. Officer Feuster underwent surgery and needed his jaw wired shut. It’s the belief that the initial disturbance on the housing unit by the inmates was a set up to savagely attack an officer. Officer Feuster currently remains out of work while recovering from his injuries, and unfortunately dealing with the hardship of receiving approximately half of his salary and the burden of paying his families medical benefit

Nevada Department of Corrections Lovelock Correctional Institution

“The staff at Lovelock Correctional Center is always doing something to better their community. The most recent event they worked helped local veterans,” stated Interim Director E.K. McDaniel, “We are very proud of their achievement.” This year’s award criteria included exhibiting effective partnerships with the community to produce a positive image of corrections; staff members that demonstrated dedication to their work, innovation and creativity when confronted with challenges and strong leadership with unique ability to guide and inspire subordinates.

2015 Corrections USA Image Award:

Sgt. Socolof was driving on the New Jersey Turnpike northbound when he pulled into the Joyce Kilmer rest area. Upon exiting the rest area building Sgt. Socolof was alerted to an emergency in the parking lot. The medical emergency involved a 49 year old female in cardiac arrest. Sgt. Socolof immediately identified himself, began to perform CPR and spoke with a 911 dispatcher requesting additional assistance. New Jersey State Troopers arrived and Sgt. Socolof requested an AED, which was utilized on the individual. The 49 year old female, Janet Palatini from Parsippany, New Jersey Was given two shocks with the AED. Sgt. Socolof continued CPR until local EMS arrived and he was relieved. Sgt. Socolof remained with the individuals’ family members until they departed with the emergency vehicles en route to Robert Wood Johnson in New Brunswick, NJ. Sgt. Socolof provided his information to the State Troopers from the Cranford Barracks.

About Corrections USA:

CUSA is a not-for-profit corporation formed by correctional officers in 1998 to provide national recognition for correctional officers employed by federal, state and local governments and is the leader in the fight against prison privatization on the national level. We work daily to enhance the image of Correctional Officers across the nation. CUSA was the first organization to give out the “Valor Award” to Correctional Officers who have helped make the image of Correctional Officers better through their Brave acts. We proudly represent approximately 80,000 publicly employed correctional officers from across this nation.

Media Contact

Buffie McFadyen
Executive Director, Corrections USA
(719) 248-8941