Sanibel Police Chief William Dalton is recognized with a proclamation at the City Council meeting for his 25 years of service to the community. SC file photo by Chuck Larsen
Sanibel Police Chief William Dalton is recognized with a proclamation at the City Council meeting for his 25 years of service to the community. SC file photo by Chuck Larsen

The Sanibel City Council meeting on Tuesday, June 4, commenced with award presentations and recognition of achievements and milestones.

Florida League of Cities Legislative Director Scott Dudley presented the Home Rule HERO Award to Sanibel Mayor Kevin Ruane, Vice Mayor Mick Denham and Councilwoman Holly Smith. Dudley also presented the city with the 2019 Environmental Stewardship Award.

This is really the best part of my job: giving awards to cities that are innovative, creative and leading edge,” said Dudley. “Sanibel is one of those cities.”

The Environmental Stewardship Award, part of the Florida Municipal Achievement Awards, focuses on cities that promote conservation, improve and protect environmental conditions and promote environmental education programs. The city’s winning entry was the Sanibel Communities for Clean Water program.

This award is really for the community,” said Ruane. “It’s what you’ve done to lead by example and try to improve what we can from a water quality point of view.”

Sanibel launched the program to protect water quality and reduce the impacts of poor water quality on wildlife habitats, the local economy and our quality of life. SCCW aims to educate local residents about water quality and provide science-based solutions on how to improve it.

It is an excellent program and something that can be replicated across the state,” said Dudley. “I’m honored to present this award to Sanibel.”

Proclamations Honor Police Chief, Optimist Club Road Rally and COA

Sanibel Police Chief William Dalton was recognized with a proclamation in honor of his 25 years of service to the community. He was hired in May 1994 as a police officer and rose through the ranks of sergeant, lieutenant and major. He became chief in March 2017.

Dalton was awarded the Lee County Bar Association’s Police Officer of the Year in 2003, and is a two-time recipient of Sanibel’s Employee of the Quarter award. During his distinguished career, Dalton earned his Master of Business Administration with an emphasis in management, as part of the city’s Employee Educational Tuition Assistance Program.

After 25 years, there is a lot of thanks to go around,” said Dalton. “I encourage all of our officers to keep their nose to the grindstone. The days can be long, but the years have a way of flying by.”

The Sanibel Captiva Optimist Club Fourth of July Road Rally is celebrating 40 years as a community fundraiser for various island youth services. The inaugural event was held in 1980 and initially sponsored by the Sanibel Captiva Lions Club and Island Reporter newspaper.

The Sanibel & Captiva Islands Chamber of Commerce eventually assumed responsibility for the event and in 1998 the Optimist Club became the champion of what is today’s road rally. Teams follow clues, complete tasks and challenges by driving safely around the islands. It’s a competition of accuracy, time and mileage – not speed.

The 47th annual meeting of Conchologists of America will be held June 17-23 at South Seas Island Resort and celebrate the 100th birthday of Dr. R. Tucker Abbott, one of the founding members of the Sanibel Captiva Shell Club and founding director of The Bailey-Matthews National Shell Museum.

The shell club, formed in 1961, is part of The Conchologist of America with more than 2,500 members throughout the country, including 400 additional members worldwide. COA endorses responsible scientific collecting as a means of monitoring the status of mollusks species and populations.

The convention will feature field trips, silent auctions, live auctions and a parade of snails. These activities support the organization in awarding grants, scholarships and donations in the name of conchology and malacology.

Williams Recognized for Earning Master’s Degree

Engineer and Community Services Director Keith Williams was recognized for earning his master’s degree in public administration from South New Hampshire University. Williams joined city staff in 2012 and previously served as city engineer for the City of Smyrna, Ga. He earned his bachelor’s degree with honors in civil and environmental engineering from the University of Tennessee.