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State Patrol troop honored at Governors Challenge Awards
1001 GSP I Capt William Hitchens
Troop Commander Capt. Billy Hitchens accepts the award Troop I received at the Governors Challenge Awards. - photo by Photo provided

MACON — The Georgia State Patrol’s Troop I was one of several law enforcement agencies to take home a prize last Wednesday when the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety hosted its 15th annual Governor’s Challenge Awards at the Macon Centreplex.

An annual recognition program for law enforcement agencies of all sizes from all over the state, the program features awards in seven different categories based on department size as well as several other specialty categories.

Troop I includes the counties of Effingham, Bryan, Chatham, Liberty, Long McIntosh, Glynn, Wayne, Bacon, Pierce, Brantley, Camden, Charlton, Ware, and Clinch. Led by Troop Commander Capt. Billy Hitchens, Troop I took third place in the GSP Troop category.

Designed to award outstanding achievements in highway safety enforcement and education, the awards recognize agencies for the approach and effectiveness of their overall highway safety programs. Agencies are evaluated not just for enforcement initiatives, but for innovative problem-solving in their communities, using public information activities, and creating departmental policies that support their traffic enforcement campaign efforts.

“I’m proud of the work Troop I has accomplished and I want to congratulate Capt. Billy Hitchens on their achievement,” said GOHS Director Harris Blackwood. “We hope to continue seeing them at Governor’s Challenge for years to come.”

“We’ve had this awards program for almost 15 years and one of the things we strive for is to let these departments know that whether they have five officers or 500, we appreciate the work they do to keep their communities safe,” said GOHS Law Enforcement Services Director Powell Harrelson. “These men and women work hard and we want to recognize them for their dedication to highway safety.”

For more information about Georgia’s Governor’s Challenge Program, visit or call (404) 656-6996.