(L-R) Perrysburg school board member William Jarman Davis III, Superintendent Tom Hosler, new school resource officer Mark Lepkowski, and Police Chief Daniel Paez.
Perrysburg Police Officer Mark Lepkowski was introduced as the first-ever school resource officer for Perrysburg Schools at Monday night's board of education meeting.
Officer Lepkowski is a 1984 graduate of Perrysburg High School, and has been with the Perrysburg Police since 1995.
"I said for my 30-year reunion I was going back to high school," he joked at the meeting.
The school resource officer, who will have a $76,500 annual salary, will be paid mostly by the school district ($52,164). The remainder will be paid by the city, and the hiring of a new police officer was included city's 2014 budget to maintain the number of police on the streets.
Superintendent Tom Hosler said three people were interviewed for the position and Officer Lepkowski stood above the rest. Perrysburg Police, Mr. Hosler, and Perrysburg High School Principal Michael Short were involved in the interviewing process.
"We're the largest district in northwest Ohio without a school resource officer," he said. "It was time to do something about that."
This position has been wanted for "a long time" according to Police Chief Daniel Paez, and he's excited to see it finally come to fruition.
Officer Lepkowski has served in several assignments including the bicycle patrol unit, as a field training officer, and as an instructor of a parent project. He received an associate degree in law enforcement technology from Owens Community College in 1988.
He lives in Perrysburg and has four school-aged children.
"I'm very excited to start the process," Officer Lepkowski said. "For awhile it has been a challenge I've wanted to do."
The position is still being evaluated and he'll be training for the new job, so he doesn't know if he will begin at the end of this year, or if he will start next fall.