During his 27-year career, Hinesville Police Department Lt. Tracey Howard has been a beat cop, a detective and is now head of HPD’s traffic accident investigation unit.
As of Thursday, he can add being Masonic Lodge 271’s 2017 Civil Servant of the Year to his resume.
The award was presented bymasons Jim Arnold and Jeff Allmond.
“I know many people in town who speak well of your service to the department and the community,” Arnold told Howard when presenting the award at HPD.
But Arnold said it was something Howard did at a recent lodge meeting that clinched the honor.
Howard was there to give a presentation on gangs to the masons and their families, and “it was very informative and very well received by all.”
Yet when the masons went into their meeting, Howard continued to share his knowledge of gangs with family members, Arnold said, and a few days later, one mason’s son, a middle schooler, pointed out a gang sign to his father — proof that the presentation made an impact.
“Our families were intrigued and enthralled,” Arnold said. “I also have had many people in our lodge speak to me about (Howard’s) efforts and what you’ve done to represent Hinesville in your various jobs over the years.”
Howard said the honor was “awesome.”
“The masons do so much for the community as a whole and in support of the police department,” he said. “For them to recognize me individually and specifically is such an honor. I feel like I haven’t done enough to deserve it, but I certainly appreciate.”
Howard said his philosophy on being an officer is pretty simple.
“Each contact I make, I try to make it as individual as I can and treat someone how I would want my mother to be treated if she were still here,” he said.