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Steve Goodwin presented with lifetime achievement award in traffic safety

December 19, 2013 | Virginia News

News Image On Thursday, December 18, the International Association of Chiefs of Police presented retired DMV Program Manager Steve Goodwin with the 2013 J. Stannard Baker Award for Highway Safety.

The prestigious J. Stannard Baker Award annually recognizes outstanding individual lifetime contributions to highway safety. Law enforcement officers of state, county, metropolitan, or municipal agencies, as well as other private or public sector representatives, are selected by the Highway Safety Committee for their sustained, continuous, career-spanning, and unusual initiative and creativity in developing and implementing highway safety programs within their agencies or within the communities they serve. 

Mr. Goodwin’s assignment as a Military Policeman launched his 46-year commitment to all aspects of highway safety.  He served as a police officer, a school resource officer, and the first detective in the Vinton, Virginia, Police Department; and as an auxiliary deputy with Franklin County Sheriff’s Office for two decades.  However, he found his niche and achieved his greatest contributions to traffic safety when he was appointed in 1986 a regional highway safety manager with the Virginia Highway Safety Office, a position he held until as well-deserved retirement in January 2013.

He organized the multidisciplinary and multijurisdictional Blue Ridge Transportation Safety Board, as well as numerous programs aimed at young people.  For example, during the 2012-13 school year, his Youth of Virginia Speak out About Traffic Safety program was presented in 96 high schools and 16 middle schools throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. 

Mr. Goodwin also conceived and implemented the multidisciplinary Blue Ridge Regional Crash Investigation Team that provides expertise and state-of-the-art equipment to investigate serious traffic crashes and to develop ways to prevent others. 

Mr. Goodwin's unselfish efforts and passion for highway safety throughout his adult life has saved countless young lives and his contribution is recognized with this award.

The J. Stannard Baker Award is presented by the IACP, in collaboration with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Northwestern University’s Center for Public Safety.

This award honors the late J. Stannard Baker who made significant contributions to highway safety. Mr. Baker served as director of Research and Development at the Northwestern University Traffic Institute (now the Center for Public Safety) for over thirty years. During that time he focused on the causes of traffic crashes and the techniques of collision investigation and reconstruction. He was known throughout the world as the “father of accident investigation.” Mr. Baker’s groundbreaking textbook, Traffic Accident Investigation Manual, is the worldwide standard.

Numerous friends and colleagues from local law enforcement and other traffic safety organizations attended the ceremony on Thursday to congratulate Mr. Goodwin and thank him for his years of contribution to highway safety. NHTSA Director of Safety Programs John Marshall also attended the ceremony to honor Goodwin. Marshall is the former Virginia Secretary of Public Safety and son of former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall.

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