John J. Flood was recently named 1994 Police Officer of the Year by the Emerald Society of Illinois, a police fraternal society founded in 1975 to promote good will, fellowship and an appreciation for the Irish heritage that is historically intertwined with police work in the older industrial cities of the U.S.; most notably, Boston, Chicago and New York.
The award bestowed upon Mr. Flood culminates a lifetime of service to the law enforcement profession both as a police officer and union leader responsive to the men and women who vested their faith in his leadership and his abilities to improve the working conditions for thousands of officers across the State of Illinois.
The Police Officer of the Year award is given in recognition of the generous support John J. Flood has extended to the Emerald Society of Illinois in the past two decades, particularly as it related to the establishment of the Pipes & Drums of the Emerald Society. In February 1982, Chicago Police Officers James Doyle, William Fahey and Richard O’Brien were killed in the line of duty. Through the auspices of the Mayor of the City of Chicago and others, the Pipe & Drum Band of the New York Police Department Emerald Society was brought in to play at the Chicago police funerals.
A few months after that it was decided be members of the Emerald Society to organize a local piping band to play at funerals of police officers and firefighters killed in the line of duty. Since that time the Pipe & Drum Band has grown to over fifty members – many coming from the outlying suburbs and the Cook County Sheriff’s Police and Illinois State Police.
In large measure the success of the piping band is a reflection of the dedication shown by its founders – and individuals like John J. Flood who demonstrated their confidence in the long-term benefit of a musical ensemble such as this. 1994 marks the first year that the Police Officer of the Year Award will be given out.
Prior to this time the Emerald Society of Illinois named a “Man of the Year” at its annual Spring dinner dance.
This year, however, the Board of Directors decided to create a special award to be given to an individual from the law enforcement community who has demonstrated a commitment to his profession, community service and the ideals of the Emerald Society of Illinois.
John J. Flood will be the first recipient of the Police Officer of the Year Award at the 19th Annual Dinner Dance to be held at the Lexington House, 7717 W. 95th St., Hickory Hills, Illinois on April 23.