Brownstown Exchange Club presents awards during annual dinner



No day is ever the same for Lt. Andy Wayman at the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department.

But his approach has not wavered over the course of his 22 years at the department.

“More than 20 years ago, I put my hand on a Bible and I swore an oath, and part of it was to perform the duties to the best of my ability, and that’s how I’ve approached my entire career, and I take that serious,” he said. “It’s what I’ve done every day since and I’ve had about every assignment at the sheriff’s department, and I’ve always tried to do my best.”

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The community has taken notice, as Wayman was presented with the Brownstown Exchange Club 2018 Police Officer of the Year award during the ninth annual Community Service Awards Dinner June 13 at W.R. Ewing.

The program honors community servants, and the organization presented seven awards.

“It’s very humbling because you don’t really get into this profession for awards,” Wayman said after the dinner. “It’s nice to be noticed on occasion.”

Wayman, who is from Medora, was hired as a jailer Dec. 17, 1996, after working for Walmart for a number of years.

“I had worked at Walmart at the time and helped set up the new Supercenter stores and transferred to Seymour,” he said.

After he set up the Seymour store, he saw where the sheriff’s department needed a jailer and applied.

“I think I started working the next day,” Wayman said.

On Dec. 31, 1997, he was sworn in as a deputy.

“Sheriff Herschel Baughman hired me,” he said.

He became chief deputy Jan. 1, 2005, under then-sheriff Jerry Hounshel and then again Jan. 1, 2011, when Jackson County Sheriff Mike Carothers was sworn in.

Wayman humbly accepted the award from the Exchange Club by first thanking his family.

“Anyone that knows me knows that I couldn’t have done this by myself,” he said. “Without my family pretty much readjusting their entire lives to accommodate my service at the sheriff’s department, it’s the whole family, they all serve.”

He also thanked his colleagues at the department and credited them with the award.

“It’s easy to look good when you’re surrounded by a bunch of professionals, and I will accept this on their behalf,” he said.

Judge AmyMarie Travis said she was thankful to present the award to Wayman because he has earned it.

“He’s someone I feel blessed to know as a friend and as a law enforcement officer,” Travis said.

She said Wayman is always willing to help and volunteer his time.

“If there is somebody that you, ‘Hey, we need help,’ he will have his hand up to do it,” Travis said.

Blake Hackman, an agriculture teacher at Brownstown Central High School, was given the organization’s highest honor with the presentation of the Book of Golden Deeds Award.

Hackman said when he read the list of other recipients, he was surprised to be included in the same company, which made the honor even more special.

“I just do what I do with my students, and I feel like I’m being awarded for something that’s just part of my job,” he said. “I don’t feel like I should be up there with the people that have previously got it because they’re people that I’ve always admired.”

Steve Edwards presented the award and said Hackman is a major part of the community.

“He has done so much here,” he said, noting Hackman has created an active FFA chapter with community service in mind. “Blake is always a person willing to help and will always be the first to help you.”

He also has been a part of the Trinity Lutheran High School school board, Immanuel Lutheran School school board, Brownstown beautification committee and the Jackson County Fair memorial tree planting committee, just to name a few.

Hackman said his servant heart came from his parents, who taught him the importance of helping the community.

“It’s always been something my family has done, taking care of the community you’re involved with,” he said. “It’s very rewarding because you’re living here and you’ll take care of the community. That’s what I teach my students.”

Luke Nolting was awarded the Brownstown/Ewing Cultural Heritage Award for his work with Brownstown/Ewing Main Street. The organization promotes the history and heritage of the communities.

“It truly is a great honor,” he said of receiving the award. “I couldn’t do it without all the people that help out, though.”

Nolting started with the board a few years ago.

“I recruited all the people for the board, but they’re the ones that do all the work,” he said.

Nolting said his leadership qualities come from his family.

“I’ve always been taught to give back to the community and be thankful for everything I have,” he said. “You can make the community a better place with work.”

Jerry Hounshel received the Proudly We Hail Award, Wayne and Judy Gilbert received the Community Service Award, Maggie Rohlfing received the Youth of the Year Award and each Student of the Month was recognized.

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Recipients for the Brownstown Exchange Club’s ninth annual Community Service Awards

Proudly We Hail Award: Jerry Hounshel

Community Service Award: Wayne and Judy Gilbert

Police Officer of the Year: Andy Wayman

Youth of the Year: Maggie Rohlfing

Brownstown/Ewing Cultural Heritage Award: Luke Nolting

Book of Golden Deeds Award: Blake Hackman

Students of the Month: Claire Smith, Jenny Runge, Emma Zabor, Madison Klinge, Maggie Rohlfing, Shelby Stuckwisch and Stuart Hayden


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