Police Officer Of The Year 2023
Awarded by Rotary Club of Unley

Commissioner Grant Stevens, Senior Sergeant Gary Wills, DG Craig Dowling, Vocational Director Chris Davis RCU, Pres John Peacham RCU
CONGRATULATIONS go to Senior Constable Gary Wills, named by Club President John Peacham as the winner of the Rotary Club of Unley, SA Police Officer of the Year Award for 2023.
This award was established in 1978 in partnership with SAPOL to recognize outstanding service of police officers to the community and has been running for 45 years.
It is a community-based award where nominations are sought from the general public and organisations all over the state. It looks for officers who exceed the requirements of duty, volunteer in a significant way to give back to the community with courtesy, courage, kindness, understanding and compassion. This may be in the face of tragedy, trauma, natural disasters, or community development.
Gary is a Family Violence Intervention Officer with 30 years of experience, stationed at Gawler within the Barossa Criminal Investigation Branch and was nominated by Brian Burt from the Rotary Club of Gawler.
Gary contributes around the clock to the welfare of young people struggling with the effects of alcohol, drugs, family and domestic violence, negative peer group pressure, poverty, feelings of worthlessness and homelessness. Very few have an opportunity to learn the skills needed to cope with such situations.
Gary, however, has been able to connect with these young people, building trust and effectively conveying advice, encouragement and sound direction that has turned many around.
Gary sees the importance of early intervention, and his work through the Blue Rose Project has seen a demonstrative drop in individuals who go missing. Better to find solutions to their problems than be out on the streets.
Feedback is that “Kids Trust and Respect Gary and openly talk about their Mate who is a Good Copper”
Senior Constable Gary Wills is certainly a very worthy winner of this year’s SA Police Officer of the Year.
Submitted by Chris Davis Coordinator SA Police Officer of the Year 2023 and Vocational Director for the Rotary Club of Unley 23/24