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51 new cadets graduate from PA State Police Academy


Harrisburg, PA – Colonel Robert Evanchick, commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police, announced that 51 cadets graduated from the State Police Academy in Hershey and have been assigned to troops across the commonwealth. The men and women represent the 160th graduating cadet class.

In accordance with statewide measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the graduation ceremony was closed to the public. Friends and family were afforded the opportunity to view the event via live streams on the Academy YouTube channel.

“Graduating from the academy and attaining the rank of trooper is a special day in the career of each member of the Pennsylvania State Police,” said Colonel Evanchick. “It marks the end of one journey and the beginning of another; filled with great opportunities, great challenges, and even greater responsibilities.”

Six cadets received special awards and recognition:

  • The American Legion Award, presented to the most outstanding cadet in recognition of all-around academic, physical, ethical, and moral qualifications: Richard L. Magnuson Jr.
  • The Colonel Ronald L. Sharpe Award, presented to the cadet who most exemplifies the qualities of leadership: Kevin P. Wilson
  • The Colonel John K. Schafer Award, presented to the cadet who achieved the highest combined score on a series of physical skills tests: Giovanni Romero
  • The Commissioner Daniel F. Dunn Award, presented to the cadet who earned the highest level of academic achievement in the class: Jeffrey W. Payton Jr.
  • The Colonel Paul J. Chylak Award, presented to the cadet who demonstrated the highest proficiency in driver safety training: Nicholas L. Hornbaker
  • The Sergeant Charles B. Gesford Award, presented to the cadet who scored the highest on the department’s pistol qualification course: Matthew D. Stercho

The graduates have been assigned to the following troops:

Troop E, Corry
Nichole R. Klapchar
Matthew D. Stercho

Troop E, Erie
John R. Stutz
Kevin P. Wilson

Troop F, Coudersport
Luke W. Fusco

Troop F, Montoursville
Brett M. Harvey

Troop H, Carlisle
Michael J. Folcarelli

Troop H, Chambersburg
Brandon M. Gelet
Bradley G. Lay
Benjamin L. Leberfinger
Adam J. Maurer
Ally G. Neidigh
Christopher C. Pile
James T. Stevenson Jr.

Troop H, Gettysburg
Jason Gueck
Cody F. Mack
Nathan S. McHugh

Troop H, Lykens
Thomas J. Kurtz

Troop J, Avondale
Kira M. Baierl
Jordan A. Bechtel
Jesse G. Crnkovic
Nicholas J. Hornbaker
Jose C. Kizis
Drayton P. Laverio
Giovanni Romero III
Bryce E. Ruth

Troop J, Lancaster
Christopher S. Hawn

Troop J, York
Rachel M. Christensen
David W. Ferrier
Edward L. Kiser
Jacques F. Rougeau Jr.
Arileidy Salvador
Colton Zundel

Troop K, Media
Christopher J. Becker
Mark L. DiSalvatore
Ross M. Lavan
Richard L. Magnuson Jr.
Matthew R. Orkisz
Thomas J. Platt

Troop K, Philadelphia
Jarred B. Burnett
Joseph F. Koza III
Thomas E. Mesunas
Jay S. Nichols
Jeffrey W. Payton Jr.

Troop K, Skippack
Dalson W. Heinrich
John M. Hoy
Justin G. Zambelli

Troop L, Jonestown
Justin T. Gutsie
Nicholas S. Musser

Troop L, Schuylkill Haven
Kyle F. Brands
Dylan J. Reigle

For more information on the Pennsylvania State Police, visit www.psp.pa.gov. To learn more about becoming a Pennsylvania State Trooper, visit www.patrooper.com.