"It’s an opportunity to serve a very diverse, yet defined community. We are much like our own little city."
Active Shooter Drills, Behavioral Intervention Team (BIT), Title IX investigations, emergency response—these are just a few of the programs Assistant Director of Public Safety William B. Stakelin has played a key role in developing at Saint Martin’s. Those efforts recently earned him recognition as “Officer of the Year” by the Western Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators.
Each year, WACLEA honors a public safety professional who demonstrates outstanding skills, positive rapport within their community and new ideas to enhance their department. The “Officer of the Year” award is given to “a leader within their organization, not necessarily by rank but by the respect of their co-workers and managers.”
“WACLEA’s leadership and membership exemplify the great work being done day in and day out in our campus communities,” says Stakelin. He adds the recognition surprised him because he was not aware University President Roy F. Heynderickx, Ph.D., had nominated him for the award. “It’s humbling to think that somebody’s having that thought about you, unbeknownst to you,” Stakelin said. “It’s overwhelming, in some respects. It is an absolute honor to receive this award.”
Known for his outgoing personality and commitment to public safety, Stakelin has worn many hats at Saint Martin’s, ranging from National Green Dot trainer, a peer intervention program, to master of ceremonies for the annual Christmas party for Saint Martin’s staff and faculty. As a public safety professional, he strives to bring innovation, customer service and community to Saint Martin’s Public Safety. “We try to use the resources at hand and be innovative in a way that is genuinely useful to the campus community when it comes to personal and community safety,” he says.
Before joining the Saint Martin’s community, Stakelin served in a wide variety of law enforcement positions. Starting his career as a public safety officer at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Stakelin went on to work as a police officer for the Lummi Nation. He also served as deputy sheriff in Whatcom County; a task force narcotics detective for the Federal Drug Administration; a major crimes detective in the Grant County Sheriff’s Office and as deputy coroner in Thurston County.
It was Stakelin’s passion for campus safety that brought him to the Saint Martin’s Public Safety team in 2011.
“I get to do a lot of things here and that’s something that was very appealing to me, something I really enjoy,” he says. “It’s an opportunity to serve a very diverse, yet defined community. We are much like our own little city.”