HANFORD — After a successful year, the Hanford Police Department Explorers were recognized for their efforts Tuesday evening by the Hanford City Council.
Hanford Police Chief Parker Sever said everyone at the department is very proud of the Explorers post.
“They do an outstanding job representing the city and the Hanford Police Department,” Sever said.
Explorers are teens and young adults between the ages of 13-21 who are trained by officers in the ways of law enforcement. They compete at competitions against other Explorer posts and also complete community service.
In the last decade or so, the Hanford post has received 21 first place finishes at Explorer competitions across the state against bigger departments with more resources, Sever said.
“Our kids stack up very comparable to them, and in fact, beat them on every occasion,” he said.
Sever said officials from other departments have approached him at competitions on several occasions to tell him that they don’t even care if they win the competition, just as long as they beat Hanford.
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“Hanford is pretty much the new standard,” Sever said, adding he was told that Hanford is actually the No. 1 Explorer post in the entire state.
Sever commended the quality of Hanford’s youth and the post’s advisers, including Sgt. Albert Cano, who has overseen the Explorer program for the last 11 years. Cano and several other officers train with the Explorers every other week.
Along with great advisers, Cano said the program does so well because it has the support of the chief and the entire department.
“We put 100% into it and we expect the kids to do the same,” Cano said. “It’s been a really good decade of training with these Explorers.”
Sever noted that around 25 past Explorers have gone on to become law enforcement officers throughout the Central Valley and beyond.
“It’s been a very successful program in the city and one that we look forward to continuing,” he said.
On behalf of the council, Mayor Sue Sorensen thanked the Explorers for their hard work and dedication and told them to keep up the good work.