Ethical Courage Award

Given each year since 1998, this award is intended to recognize an individual or an organization for especially meritorious leadership or courage related to law enforcement ethics and integrity. Included among the annual awards are those for Ethical Courage; Noble Service; and Ethics Achievement.

2016 Honoree

In recognition of his outstanding leadership and ethical courage, Chief Will D. Johnson of Arlington PD was presented the ILEA Ethical Courage Award during the Contemporary Issues and Ethics Conference on August 15, 2016.

On August 7, 2015 Arlington Police responded to a possible break-in at a car dealership. During a confrontation with officers the suspect was shot and died at the scene. Chief Johnson not only responded to this tragic situation with compassion but demonstrated the power of community policing, procedural justice and transparency.

So what did Arlington get right?

For one, its police chief is a keen adherent of a law enforcement theory called “procedural justice.” Academics and theoreticians dress it up with a lot of policy wonk-speak, but in simple terms, procedural justice states that you get a better outcome when you balance the stick of law enforcement with the carrot of community trust.1

Thank you Chief Johnson for your outstanding service to the community.


1Floyd, J. (2015, August 13). Here’s what went right after the Arlington shooting. The Dallas Morning News.

Past Honorees

  • Mike McCoy (2013)
    Senior Program Officer, The Meadows Foundation
  • Jillian Smith (2012)
    Officer, Arlington Police Dept.
    Arlington, TX
  • Dan P. Carlson (2011)
    Director (Retired), Institute for Law Enforcement Administration
    Plano, TX
  • Mark Field (2010)
    Chief, Wheaton Police Dept.
    Wheaton, IL
  • Michelle Guerette (2009)
    Police Officer, Providence Police Dept.
    Providence, RI
  • Henry Fluck (2008)
    Chief, Cedar Park Police Dept.
    Cedar Park, TX
  • Bob Decker (2007)
    Sergeant, Houston Police Dept.
    Houston, TX
  • Brownsville Police Dept. (2004)
    Brownsville, TX
  • Arizona Peace Officer Standards and Training (2003)
    Phoenix, AZ
  • David Gebhardt (2002)
    Officer, Rochester Police Dept.
    Rochester, NY
  • Keith Batt (2001)
    Officer, Pleasanton Police Dept.
    Pleasanton, CA
  • Perry Dunlop (2000)
    British Columbia, Canada
  • David Snyder (1999)
    Amarillo, TX
  • Jeffrey Harbin (1998)
    Chief, Carnegie Police Dept.
    Carnegie, PA