UHDPD Welcomes New Officers, Awards Commendations
Three New Officers Sworn In, Six Honored for Life-Saving Feats
By Cynthia Gonzales
The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) Police Department recently recognized six officers for their life-saving efforts and swore-in three new police officers.
The ceremony took place February 15 in the TDECU Tour Room in the University's Welcome Center and was well-attended by police personnel, UHD Staff and family members of those being recognized.
Five police officers and one security officer received commendations for their life-saving efforts last October when, in two separate incidents, they were able to save two individuals from ending their lives on the Main Street Bridge.
"You've heard the words 'going above and beyond the call of duty' all of the time," said UHD Police Chief Michael Benford, "These six individuals here today indeed did that."
The Officers recognized were, Sgt. Imelda Rodgriguez, Officers Matthew Muñoz, Hector Gutierrez, Vincent Wilkins, Tabitha Rivera and Security Officer Gil Limon.
Each received the Chief of Police Commendation for Heroism Award.
Additionally, three new police officers also were sworn-in at the ceremony. The UHD Police Department newcomers are Sgt. Casey Davis and Officers Deionne Jackson and Ronald Cooks. All three police officers delivered heartfelt words of thanks to their family, friends and colleagues in attendance.
After the officers were sworn-in, Chief Benford gave the incoming officers a brief pep talk.
"As you take on this responsibility it's also important to know why we do what we do, why we serve," said Benford. "In the simplest form, service is providing something for others without any expectations, rewards or recognition. Service also give us the opportunity to help someone who may not be able to help themselves."
The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) is the second-largest university in Houston and has served the educational needs of the nation’s fourth-largest city since 1974. As one of four distinct public universities in the University of Houston System, UHD is a comprehensive, four-year university led by President Loren J. Blanchard. Annually, UHD educates approximately 14,000 students, boasts more than 66,000 alumni, and offers 45 bachelor’s degrees, 12 master’s degrees, and 19 online programs within four colleges: Marilyn Davies College of Business, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, College of Public Service, and College of Sciences and Technology. UHD has one of the lowest tuition rates in Texas.
U.S. News and World Report ranked UHD among the nation’s Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Applied Administration and Best Online Master’s Programs in Criminal Justice, as well as a Top Performer in Social Mobility. The Wall Street Journal/College Pulse ranked UHD one of the best colleges in the U.S. for its 2024 rankings, with notable distinctions: No. 1 for diversity (tied) and No. 3 for student experience. The University is designated as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, a Minority-Serving Institution, and a Military Friendly School. For more information on the University of Houston-Downtown, visit uhd.edu.