Court News Ohio
Court News Ohio
Court News Ohio

Annual Crisis Intervention Award Named for Justice Stratton

Attorney General Mike DeWine and Supreme Court Justice Evelyn Lundberg Stratton congratulate Columbus Police Department Cmdr. Chris Bowling, who received the first Evelyn Lundberg Stratton CIT Champion of the Year award on September 5.

Attorney General Mike DeWine and Supreme Court Justice Evelyn Lundberg Stratton congratulate Columbus Police Department Cmdr. Chris Bowling, who received the first Evelyn Lundberg Stratton CIT Champion of the Year award on September 5.

Attorney General Mike DeWine and Supreme Court Justice Evelyn Lundberg Stratton congratulate Columbus Police Department Cmdr. Chris Bowling, who received the first Evelyn Lundberg Stratton CIT Champion of the Year award on September 5.

Attorney General Mike DeWine and Supreme Court Justice Evelyn Lundberg Stratton congratulate Columbus Police Department Cmdr. Chris Bowling, who received the first Evelyn Lundberg Stratton CIT Champion of the Year award on September 5.

An annual award that recognizes law enforcement officers who de-escalate crises and handle incidents involving persons with mental illness has been named for Ohio Supreme Court Justice Evelyn Lundberg Stratton.

Justice Stratton attended a Crisis Intervention Team advanced training conference this week in Columbus and said she was surprised to learn of the honor.

“I thought you had to be dead to have an award named after you,” she said.

Betsy Johnson, associate executive director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness of Ohio, said the awards committee considered giving Justice Stratton the first Evelyn Lundberg Stratton CIT Champion of the Year award “but it seemed too little given all that she has done for the program over the years.

“Instead, the committee decided to name the CIT Champion of the Year Award in her honor so year after year we will be reminded of her contribution in making Ohio’s one of the best CIT programs in the country.”

In May, Justice Stratton announced her intention to retire by the end of the year after 16 years of service on the Supreme Court.

Justice Stratton presented the first award to Columbus Police Department Cmdr. Chris Bowling, who’s been at the forefront of CIT in Franklin County since 2003 and assisted many other counties in launching CIT programs.

Terry Russell, NAMI Ohio executive director, also spoke of Justice Stratton’s impact.

“On behalf of the over 525,000 Ohioans with serious mental illness and their families whom NAMI Ohio represents, we are grateful to Justice Stratton for her tireless efforts to improve the quality of their lives,” he said. “Naming this award in her honor is our way of acknowledging her specifically for being the champion of Ohio’s CIT program. Additionally, it will ensure that she is remembered for her contribution to this program each and every year when the award is given to others who follow in her footsteps.”

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