President’s Message


Welcome to NAWLEE!

I am honored to take the helm as the President of NAWLEE from out-going President Captain Anna Richardson-Griffin, Tampa Florida Police Department.  Anna and I had worked closely to move the organization forward, and having Deputy Shannon Trump, Noblesville, Indiana Police Department as the 1st Vice President and Chief Sonia Quinones, Hallandale Beach  as 2nd Vice President positions the new NAWLEE Executive Board for success in 2020!  Treasurer Lieutenant Tammie Reeder, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma has worked tirelessly to keep our finances responsibly handled and tracked.

The NAWLEE Board also has two new members, who were voted into office at the 2019 conference:  Secretary Commander Cathy Haggerty, Austin Texas Police Department (retired) and Associate Member at Large Sergeant Sherri Heichelbech, Indiana State Police.

Immediate Past President Deputy Chief Val Cunningham, Indianapolis Metro Police Department continues to serve in an advisory capacity and also as the Board’s liaison to CRI-TAC.  Her contributions and measured leadership have been integral to our success as a Board and as an organization.  Val has also encouraged NAWLEE to embrace the meaning of our “E’s”—namely to Empower, Encourage, Educate, and Elevate.

Founding partner Motorola Solutions continues to be a stalwart supporter of NAWLEE.  The work of Emily Allen and Lauren Mora is very much appreciated.  These two leaders in their field enthusiastically support NAWLEE professionally, while also service as mentors and collaborators.  Motorola Solutions continues to sponsor the Woman Law Enforcement Executive of the Year award which is presented at the annual conference and then celebrated in the recipient’s home town.  We cannot thank them enough for all that they do to recognize women leaders in law enforcement!

Executive Director Kym Craven’s work on several grant projects has been exceptional.  NAWLEE received its first ever COPS Office grant awarded by COPS Office Director Phil Keith. This grant will help NAWLEE evaluate the restrictive factors in existence for women already in law enforcement and those entering the policing profession. The project goal is to develop a curriculum for gender intelligence and awareness training which will be open to all law enforcement professionals. Long term, NAWLEE hopes to integrate this type of training into academy sessions with advanced training for supervisors and executives.  This initial grant was followed by a second COPS grant for capacity building, a sub-grant from RTI on recruitment and retention, and a grant from Motorola Solutions Foundation for mentoring.  NAWLEE continues to be active on the CRI-TAC project which brings technical assistance and training to agencies of all sizes.

The Board has reached out to many members to chair committees and assist the organization in other ways (mentoring; membership; social media), and we are continually amazed at the dedication of our members to commit themselves to building the organization.

I believe that we all Lead—Inspire—Mentor every single day and in every relationship.  We are enthusiastically looking for opportunities to help the next generation of female leaders to advance.

In addition to our members, NAWLEE could not operate without the support of our many sponsors and partners who believe in the mission of NAWLEE.

In closing, please know that you can reach out to me or anyone on the Board at any time.  I promise to lead with integrity and with the best interests of the organization in mind.  I will strive to model my leadership on the examples of all the NAWLEE Presidents before me who paved the way with excellence and professionalism.


Paula Balafas

NAWLEE President

Commander, University of Colorado Boulder Police Department