Roundtree named Richmond County schools Officer of the Year



The Richmond County School Safety and Security Depart­ment named Lt. Richard Round­tree the 2011 Officer of the Year, Chief Patrick Clayton announced Tuesday.

The annual recognition goes to an officer who does outstanding work in improving the safety of the district’s schools, Clayton said.

Roundtree was credited for solving an arson at Glenn Hills High School, cases involving $60,000 worth of copper thefts and expanding the gang task force.

“He’s very deserving of it,” Clayton said. “He’s done an outstanding job for me and every job I gave him, he’s gone above and beyond to do.”

Roundtree was given the award at the Richmond County Board of Education meeting Tuesday. He received a plaque, a letter from the superintendent and an off-duty gun donated by United Loan and Firearm.

Clayton said the Officer of the Year is chosen from candidates nominated as officers of the month throughout the year. Safety department members vote on a year-end winner, and the votes are counted confidentially by Clayton and his captain.

Roundtree revealed his intention to run for Richmond County sheriff earlier this month after spending three years as a school safety officer and 16 years before that with the Richmond Coun­ty Sheriff’s Office.

Despite the award, he said he sees his new title of Officer of the Year as more of a “testament to my work than a stepping stone.”

Roundtree said he focused last year on reducing violence in the school system, which is dependent on the safety of the neighborhoods where the students live.

He said he wants to continue a relationship between the school system, the community and the sheriff’s office in the future.

“That’s one of the biggest things I’m going to do is continue that partnership,” he said.


The Richmond County Board of Education took the following actions during its meeting Tuesday:

• Approved a revised schedule for 2012 high school graduations. The ceremonies will be held Sunday, May 20, and Monday, May 21, at James Brown Arena. They were originally scheduled for May 21 and 22, but a conflict with a Lady Antebellum concert prompted the change.

• Voted to invest $15 million with Regions Bank for 180 days at a 0.2 percent interest rate, which equates to $15,616 in earnings. The rate is twice what the board is currently earning from its checking account, according to a memo given to board members.