BEDFORD, N.Y. – Bedford Police Chief William Hayes welcomed Sgt. Melvin Padilla back this week after his graduation from the 250th session of the FBI National Academy, returning home with new law enforcement skills and techniques to help better protect the people of Bedford.
The National Academy Program, held at the FBI Training Complex in Quantico, Va., offers 10 weeks of advanced investigative, management and fitness training for selected officers having proven records as professionals within their agencies.
Padilla described his time in the program as an “invaluable experience and an incredibly unique opportunity that I will never forget. It was an honor to be chosen to represent the Bedford Police Department among such an esteemed group.”
The FBI Academy’s training program included instruction in law, behavioral science, forensic science, understanding terrorism/terrorist mindsets, leadership development, communication, and health and fitness.
Padilla, 37, graduated from the FBI National Academy on Sept. 21. He has contributed much to the Bedford department since he joined 10 years ago. He was named the department’s first traffic safety coordinator in 2011. Before becoming a Bedford officer, he worked with the NYPD for two years and spent six years on active duty in the U.S. Navy.
Among other accomplishments, Padilla oversaw the preparation of a 72-page document detailing the department's 2011 traffic safety program, a report that won Bedford first place in the New York Law Enforcement Challenge this past spring.
The academy, which began on July 15 and included nearly 270 students, is designed to foster the improvement of law enforcement standards and enhance professional development. Participants in the program are drawn from every state in the union, from U.S. territories, and from more than 150 partner nations.
Hayes said he is glad to have Padilla back.
"I’m looking forward to him putting the lessons learned in the program into practice here at home,” said the chief, who is a 2006 graduate of the 226th FBI National Academy session.