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Crime lab director recognized by secretary of the army.

On 14 April 2010, Secretary of the Army John M. McHugh presented Mr. Larry Chelko, director of the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Laboratory (USACIL) and leading Department of Defense (DOD) forensic scientist, with the Exceptional Civilian Service Award--the highest award that can be bestowed upon civilian personnel by the Secretary of the Army. The Exceptional Civilian Service Award, which is awarded for a demonstrable pattern of excellence and achievement, is comparable to the military's Distinguished Service Medal.

According to Mr. Chelko, the primary USACIL challenge is currently the forensic science mission that is conducted in support of warfighting operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. The importance of the forensic science mission on the battlefield and its criticality to asymmetric warfare efforts led the DOD to establish a Forensic Executive Steering Group and appoint Mr. Chelko as its science advisor. In this capacity, he directed and hosted the first of several DOD forensic science workshops, established the framework of the DOD forensic program, led the charge for the certification program for forensic examiners and laboratories, and initiated an expeditionary forensics concept plan that led to the creation of a standing force of examiners and the fielding of joint expeditionary forensic facilities (deployable laboratories for expeditionary forensic operations). In addition to managing USACIL and serving as the science advisor for the Forensic Executive Steering Group, Mr. Chelko also serves as the DOD executive agent for the Convicted Offender DNA Index System, chairs the DOD Forensic Science Committee, and represents the DOD on the President's Subcommittee on Forensic Science.

Mr. Chelko indicated that his receipt of this award is a direct reflection of the dedication and professionalism of the men and women of USACIL and their contributions to the Army's law enforcement mission at home and abroad.

Compiled by Ms. Diana K. Dean
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Publication:Military Police
Date:Sep 22, 2010
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