Media Release. Wednesday, May 11, 2022.

New Auxiliary Officers Welcomed at Badge Ceremony

(Innisfil, ON)  The South Simcoe Police Service proudly welcomed nine new Auxiliary officers Tuesday night in Innisfil.
The newest Auxiliary Unit members were formally awarded their badges at a ceremony at Innisfil Town Hall in front their proud friends and families. Attendees also included Command Officers, the Ceremonial Unit, other Auxiliary officers and members of the Bradford West Gwillimbury-Innisfil Police Services Board.

The Auxiliary recruit class of 2022 made history as the first, all-female class at the South Simcoe Police Service. The grads also marked a milestone in the recruitment process. In 2021, the police service embarked on a new partnership with the Honours Bachelor of Police Studies at Georgian College in a targeted recruiting campaign. These nine new Auxiliary members are enrolled in the program and already have their sights set on a policing career.

Describing the role of Auxiliary members as important work, Police Services Board Chair Chris Gariepy thanked the new volunteer members and welcomed them to the South Simcoe Police Service family.

“Being an Auxiliary member of the South Simcoe Police Service is a rewarding volunteer position. It provides opportunities for unique experiences and the chance to contribute to the well-being of our communities.”

South Simcoe Police Chief Andrew Fletcher congratulated the new recruits on pursuing their dream.

“Over the past year you have gone through an exhausting selection process and received hours of training – training that is both necessary for you to perform your duties both safely and effectively and to help you navigate through what has become an increasingly complex and challenging role.”

The Chief urged the group to always strive to maintain community support and enhance public trust.

“People will look at you as a role model. Think about what kind of role model you want to be. Good manners, common courtesy, respect and professionalism still go a long way to make a lasting, positive impression.”

Town of Innisfil Mayor Lynn Dollin offered heartfelt congratulations.

“To each of tonight’s badge recipients, thank you for choosing to volunteer your time within our communities. All of our residents will greatly benefit from the work you do and your hard work will not go unnoticed.”

Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury Mayor Rob Keffer said the role of the Auxiliary Unit takes on even more significance with the growing populations of Bradford West Gwillimbury and Innisfil.

“Auxiliary Unit officers are becoming an increasingly important support for our South Simcoe Police Service. May this new journey of service in our communities be rewarding and fulfilling, and recognize you are valued as a member of the service.”

Georgian College’s Dr. Eleanor Gittens called it a “phenomenal partnership” between the college and the police service with the establishment of a South Simcoe Police post-secondary auxiliary direct-entry program.

“This graduation class represents the first group of students to have successfully completed the program. When the call for applications went out, approximately 40 students attended the information session. Over 25 students applied and these nine were the ones that were successful.”

Class speaker Isabella Soligo described the event as an incredible honour and privilege to join so many people in uniform.

“We are creating history as the first all-female graduating class. Something we can be truly proud of,” Soligo said to applause.
“As Auxiliary officers, we now have the unique opportunity to take our everyday lives and do something extraordinary with them. To give back to our communities.”

Auxiliary Unit Sergeant Tony Gardner welcomed the recruits. “You were chosen because you are smart, strong and you have a career-oriented goal towards policing – all qualities that bring greatness to this unit.”

Auxiliary Jacquie Papel sang the National Anthem and Staff Sergeant Dave Phillips was the Master of Ceremonies.

Two Auxiliaries had the honour of their badges being presented by first responder family members, one a police constable and the other a firefighter.

Kassandra Beck
An 18-year resident of Simcoe County, Kassandra attends Georgian College in the Police Studies program and is a graduate of the Police Foundations diploma program with honours. Kassandra is currently working for Municipal Law Enforcement Services for the city of Barrie. Kassandra is looking forward to being a part of the auxiliary program as this program helps give her experience as well as helps her give back to the communities of Innisfil and Bradford. Kassandra is hoping for a future career as a constable in policing.

Taylor Emberley
Taylor Emberley is a long time resident of Springwater Township. Taylor has chosen to start her policing career with South Simcoe Police Service auxiliary because she wants to stay and work close to home. In addition to working and studying, Taylor is aiming to become fluent in American Sign Language. This will be a valuable skill that she will be able to communicate with a variety of people in this line of work. A graduate of the Police Foundations program, and soon to be graduate of the Police Studies program, in the next couple years Taylor would like to apply as a police constable with South Simcoe Police with an eye on specializing in forensics one day.

Maddison Fitz-Gerald
Another resident of Springwater Township, Maddison is currently attending her third year of the Police Studies Degree Program at Georgian College. Maddison has always had an interest in helping her community, as she started Cadets at a young age and is currently working within the Royal Victoria Region Health Centre as a Pandemic support worker. Maddison is working towards becoming a future police officer and is honoured to be welcomed into the South Simcoe Police Service as an Auxiliary Constable.

Victoria Ivanov
A twenty-year-old Police Studies Degree student, Victoria is studying at Georgian College and is currently in her third year. Her older brother is a police constable and has inspired her to become an officer since she was a young girl. Victoria is excited to dedicate her time and efforts to supporting the Innisfil and Bradford West Gwillimbury communities and learning more about policing from a practical perspective. She looks forward to gaining valuable knowledge and experience in the Auxiliary Unit before applying for a future career with South Simcoe Police.

Alexya Machado
Alexya currently attends Georgian College where she is in her third year of the Police Studies program. She is thrilled to begin this new journey as an Auxiliary Constable with the South Simcoe Police. Alexa looks forward to expanding her knowledge while contributing to the community. Alexya hopes for a future career in policing.

Erika Ringhofer
Erika has been a resident of Simcoe County for over 20 years. She has obtained her Police Foundations Diploma with Honours at Georgian College and is now enrolled in her third year of the Police Studies Program. She is excited to give back to her community by volunteering in the auxiliary unit and is looking forward to expanding both her knowledge and experience within the policing field.

Chelsey Rivet
Chelsey is a long-time Simcoe County resident who has had a passion for law and justice since a young age and began to pursue her policing career path four years ago. She graduated as one of the top 5 students of her Police Foundations class and bridged into the Police Studies Degree program to further her knowledge. Chelsey has gained experience as a security guard and wants to continue making connections with the residents of Innisfil and Bradford. She hopes to be hired full time by South Simcoe Police in the future.

Isabella Soligo
Simcoe County resident Isabella Soligo is a student at Georgian College, where she is in her third year of her Police Studies Degree. The 20-year-old is broadening her knowledge in the hopes of becoming a police officer. She volunteers regularly at Hospice Simcoe in Barrie as well as working two jobs. Isabella is excited to give back to her communities as an SSPS Auxiliary Officer.

Erin Troian
After completing Police Foundations with honours at St. Lawrence College, Erin bridged into 3rd year police studies at Georgian college. Erin grew up involved with South Simcoe’s 4-H club, and is eager to support the Innisfil and Bradford communities. Erin is an active volunteer in Barrie but is looking forward to continue learning as an auxiliary member for SSPS.