2004 Thomas O. Davis Award

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 Ross Receives Thomas O. Davis Award for 2004

Jennifer Ross award winner
Decatur Police Corporal Jennifer Ross (right) accepts the Thomas O. Davis award for 2004 from Peggy Merriss, city manager and Fred Cavalli, DBA president.
The Decatur Business Association has presented the fourth annual Thomas O. Davis Public Servant Award to Corporal Jennifer Ross. Ross joined the City of Decatur Police Department in June 1996. She has worked in Special Units as the District Patrol Officer in the downtown business area and is now assigned to the Criminal Investigations Division (CID).

In addition to her regular duties, Ross is a member of the SAFEKIDS of DeKalb County Coalition and serves as the child safety advocate for Decatur Police.

As a Child Passenger Safety technician certified by NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration), she teaches parents and caregivers proper car seat installation. She conducts teaching programs in the City Schools of Decatur regarding booster seats, pedestrian safety, poison control safety and teen driving. She was chosen to become a National Instructor for Child Passenger Safety in 2002.

In 2003, Ross worked with the merchants at West Ponce Place to produce a festival that brought folks to downtown Decatur and benefited the Special Olympics. She spent many hours working with the merchants, the city staff, and the volunteers to coordinate the logistics for this event. As a result, Decatur Police raised $5,000 for Special Olympics on the first try.

Angelo Pitillo, owner of Café Lily and Levi's Fishouse, nominated Ross for the honor saying, "Corporal Ross is respected and revered within the community as the notes commending her actions attest. She is dedicated to serving, and exemplifies the best qualities of a public servant with equal amounts of competence, enthusiasm, professionalism, and concern. Decatur is a better community because of her efforts through her job and beyond."

The DBA established the Thomas O. Davis Award in memory of Thomas O. Davis, Decatur's city attorney from 1968 until his death in 2000. The first award was presented to the family of Thomas O. Davis in January 2001. Previous award recipients include Virginia Atchison in 2002 and Willie Shoemake in 2003.