ECSO Sheriff’s Blazer Academy wins statewide award for ‘Outstanding Program of the Year’

Pensacola News Journal | By Colin Warren-Hicks | September 23, 2021

The Escambia County Sheriff’s Office has won an award for its newest outreach program aimed at providing positive mentors to boys between the ages of 13 and 15.

The Sheriff’s Blazer Academy was named the “Outstanding Program of the Year” for crime prevention this week by the Florida Crime Prevention Association. The association will hold a formal awards ceremony Oct. 21 in Orlando.

“While this is a tremendous honor, the true value is the growth and evolvement of these young men throughout the entirety of the program,” said Escambia County Sheriff Chip Simmons in a social media post about the award.

“This first class was a huge success, and the Sheriff’s Blazer Academy will be a program we offer each year. We plan to expand the program by offering a Sheriff’s Blazer Academy for young women as well. We are proud to serve our community by providing mentorships for our youth.”

Next year, the ECSO plans to hold two more Blazer Academy sessions for boys that each will run for five weeks, in addition to at least one Blazer Academy session for girls.

The dates for future sessions have not been set, but potential participants or their parents can sign up at

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