Owensboro Police Chief Art Ealum was awarded the 2019 Melvin Shein award for his distinguished law enforcement service to the Commonwealth. This award is given annually to a single recipient who has contributed immeasurably to the assistance and promotion of law enforcement in the state of Kentucky.
Ealum’s nomination letter described the chief’s valuation of and humanity toward each and every employee that works under him.
“He is held in high esteem for the way he values every employee of his agency and knowns everyone on a first-name basis,” the letter states. “He is passionate, caring and displays genuine concern and empathy for the men and women under his command — yet demands professionalism, accountability and a commitment to excellence.”
Ealum was presented with the award on Nov. 6 during the Kentucky Law Enforcement Council meeting in Louisville. According to an article from Kentucky Law Enforcement Magazine, Ealum was both surprised and humbled when his name was called to accept the honor.
“Ealum’s nomination letter outlines numerous contributions to the Owensboro community, as well as the Commonwealth, in many programs and organizations,” KLE Magazine stated. “Most recently he was named the new president of the Kentucky Association of Chiefs of Police. Ealum was recognized as an ‘excellent role model’ in his nomination letter, offering quality leadership, respect and appreciation to all.”
Each year, the recipient of the Shein Award is recognized by having their award displayed in the KLEC office in Richmond. The recipient is also presented with a plaque of their own.
“It is truly an honor to receive such a prestigious award,” Ealum told Owensboro Times on Thursday. “I am humbled by this recognition. I am eternally grateful to all of the men and women, civilian and sworn, that I have been blessed to serve with at the Owensboro Police Department. Their professionalism and dedication is truly an inspiration.”
Ealum was hired at OPD as a patrolman in 1991. He has been serving the agency as chief of police since 2012 and leads more than 100 sworn officers and 50 civilian employees on a daily basis.