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Posted on: December 15, 2023

Huss, Kopplin Receive Police & Firefighter of the Year Awards

2023 Gerstacker Awards 450x335

December 15, 2023  Two dedicated team members from the City of Midland were recently selected as the 2023 Carl and Esther Gerstacker Police and Firefighter of the Year award winners. Midland Police Department Detective Lucas Huss was named the City’s 2023 Police Officer of the Year, while Midland Fire Department Fire Truck Operator Max Kopplin was honored as the 2023 Firefighter of the Year.

Midland Police Department Officer Lucas Huss

Detective Huss is a 10-year veteran of the Midland Police Department (MPD), joining MPD in 2013 as a road patrol officer after serving with the Saginaw Valley State University Police Department. Since his promotion to detective, Det. Huss has worked tirelessly on behalf of victims to solve numerous major crimes with compassion and thoroughness. In April 2022, Det. Huss received the first “Champion for Children” Award from Safe and Sound Child Advocacy Center for his dedicated investigations of crimes against children. Later that year, he and several other detectives were awarded a department unit citation for their on a homicide investigation in March 2022. Det. Huss has also collaborated with the Michigan State Police Computer Crimes Unit to perform critical digital data collections/extractions that have helped to resolve several cases for MPD and neighboring agencies. 

Midland Fire Department Fire Truck Operator Max Kopplin

FTO Kopplin began his career with the Midland Fire Department (MFD) in 2013 and currently serves at Fire Station 1 as a fire truck operator and acting lieutenant when needed. His peers nominated him for the annual award for dedicated work ethic, positive attitude, and continual pursuit new ideas and technology that will benefit the department. He oversees MFD’s social media channels, combining his passion for gaining and sharing knowledge and unique sense of humor to educate the public about fire safety and department activities.  In addition to his responsibilities as a firefighter, FTO Kopplin is also deeply involved in community service. He serves as chair of the Midland Firefighters Youth Foundation (MFFYF), organizes the annua MFFYF Charity Ball, and leads the department’s participation in fundraising events to benefit the St. Baldrick’s Foundation. His efforts with both organizations have led to a significant increase in participation and awareness within the community. 

This year’s winners were honored at a ceremony at the Midland Country Club in October. Awards are funded through and given by the Midland Area Community Foundation. The selection process and awards ceremony are coordinated by the Midland Exchange Club. Both winners will also be recognized at the Midland City Council meeting on Monday, December 18.

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