NAFTO Heads to Guam

“Where America Begins Its Day”

This month, NAFTO President Paul Hasselberger and Training Coordinator Graham Tinius traveled to Guam to meet Training Sergeant Magdalena Naputi, of the Guam Police Department, and provide the first FTO training courses in the region. Sgt Naputi, along with her training and command staff reached out to NAFTO last year, requesting a review and update of their FTO policies and paperwork, as well as a variety of FTO training for new trainers, experienced trainers, and FTO supervisors. Due to the remoteness of Guam, and the large logistical undertaking of putting on training there, Sgt Naputi explained that they generally must send staff off-island to the continental United States for training, as most providers won’t come out to them.

After many phone conversations addressed and refined the needs of the region, NAFTO realized that what Sgt Naputi was requesting would turn out to be a week-long FTO symposium, to allow the most number of officers to attend. Once word got out through the Pacific Islands’ Chiefs of Police, that a variety of Field Training courses were coming to the South Pacific, the request for space in the classes skyrocketed.

After arrangements were made to find classrooms that could accommodate the number of registrations, NAFTO and the Guam Police Department opened their doors to surrounding agencies, and welcomed the Guam Airport Police, Guam Customs and Quarantine, Guam Port Police, Guam Department of Corrections, Guam Judiciary Marshall’s, Guam Youth Affairs, Rota Police Department, Air Force DoD, Navy DoD, and, of course, the Guam Police Department.

Paul and Graham traveled for nearly 24 hours from their homes to Guam. Over the next 6 days they went on ride-a-longs to speak with officers, learn the culture of the agency and the people, and identify concerns; toured the precincts, met with command staff to discuss program philosophies and goals, and reviewed existing policies and forms; and then provided 5 days of instruction to over 100 sworn and civilian Field Training staff from a variety of agencies and islands.

The event was kicked off by a welcoming from the Guam Police Department’s Chief of Police Stephen Ignacio, and a presence of local media. (See Story)

NAFTO recognized the tremendous efforts, not only by Sgt Naputi, but by the entire training staff at Guam PD, as well as the graciousness of opening the training to agencies throughout this oft under served region. 6000 miles from home is the farthest Paul and Graham have traveled, professionally and personally. But they were met by the most hospitable, friendly, and gracious hosts they’ve encountered. We were humbled and honoured to bring NAFTO’s mission and philosophies to the Northern Mariana Islands, and the highly dedicated staff that welcomed us.

We are glad to welcome the 125 newest, and possibly the most isolated, members of NAFTO, and hope representatives from Guam and other Northern Mariana Islands can make the trip to our conference soon.

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