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Public Post is a community reporting initiative using digital tools to report on cities and towns across Vermont.Public Post is the only resource that lets you browse and search documents across dozens of Vermont municipal websites in one place.Follow reporter Amy Kolb Noyes and #PublicPost on Twitter and read news from the Post below.

Retiring Police Chief Recognized With Stuffed Giraffe

Friday, August 29, was Stephen Soares' last day as Windsor Police Chief, after six years on the job. Before he retired, however, he was bestowed with a stuffed plush giraffe – which is actually quite an honor in Windsor.

The giraffe is a symbol of the "Stick Your Neck Out Award" given by the Windsor Area Drug Task Force.  The award was first given 18 years ago to "recognize a community leader who has made a significant impact on the health and well-being of the Windsor area community."

"It is meant to honor the men and women who take a risk on behalf of the most vulnerable members of our community and is given with appreciation for those who give their heart and help to people in need," a press announcement states.

The announcement went on to say Soares was selected for this year's award "for his dedication to improving the community in ways other than enforcement."

Jill Lord, director of Patient Care Services at Mt. Ascutney Hospital and Health Center, commented on the chief's commitments to the Windsor Area Drug Task Force and Mt. Ascutney Prevention Partnership during the award ceremony. She also noted that under Chief Soares' leadership, the Windsor Police Department became the first site in Windsor County to install a permanent medication drop box collection unit.

Chief Soares will also be missed by the members of the Windsor Police Department, who posted the following on the department's Facebook page:

The Windsor Police Department would like to thank Chief Stephen Soares for his six years of dedicated service to the Windsor Police Department. Chief Soares retires today leaving behind a legacy of dedication, professionalism and a commitment to providing the best police service possible to the Town of Windsor. Thank you Chief. We will miss you.

William Sampson has taken over as the new Windsor Police Chief.

Amy is an award winning journalist who has worked in print and radio in Vermont since 1991. Her first job in professional radio was at WVMX in Stowe, where she worked as News Director and co-host of The Morning Show. She was a VPR contributor from 2006 to 2020.
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