Chesco FOP donates scholarship funds to boost police diversity

Pin It

President Steve Plaugher (Left) and Vice President Bob McCarron, Chester County FOP, announce a donation of scholarship funds for a student of color to attend the Municipal Police Academy.

WEST CHESTER — During Black History Month, the Chester County Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) provided $6,800 for tuition and stipend toward diversifying local law enforcement. The donation contributed to an initiative that began with a request from Chester County Sheriff Fredda Maddox and a scholarship started by a committee of members from the Chester County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) and the community.

Last August, after the death of George Floyd, Plaugher and the Chester County FOP Lodge No. 11 created a Diversity Work Group to study and address diversity in law enforcement in Chester County. They identified several systemic issues that began with slavery and set out to find solutions, including increasing diversity of police to reflect the diversity of county neighborhoods. Chief Deputy Kevin Dykes of the CCSO, a member of the work group and the scholarship committee, brought the scholarship for the Municipal Police Academy and Pennsylvania Act 120 training certification to their attention. Plaugher and FOP leadership voted to provide funds.

“We want police to reflect our communities and to understand the culture of differing neighborhoods in the county,” said Steve Plaugher, President of the Chester County FOP—an association representing nearly 900 active and retired law enforcement officers in the county. “We want officers of color to be able to feel pride for making an impact in their community as part of the police force. We also want to earn the trust of the neighbors we serve. The scholarship we are providing for a student of color is one of the solutions—just one link toward forging new police-community connections.”

“There is a lot of work to be done in the U.S. to diversify law enforcement since Horatio J. Homer became Boston Police Department’s first African American officer in 1878 and Samuel Jesse Battle was the first African American officer sworn in at the New York City Police Department in 1911,” said Dykes, who also served as Chester County’s first African American Chief of County Detectives. “This is a positive step.”

For a copy of the scholarship application and information, eligible prospective students should contact the or Steve Plaugher at

Share this post:

Related Posts

Comments are closed.