Less than 1 percent of law enforcement officials nationwide are selected to attend the FBI National Academy Program, so it's quite an honor.
Out of 220 law enforcement men and women worldwide, Nebraska City recently had one of its own graduate from the elite program.
Nebraska City Police Department Sgt. Chris Angus was selected to go to the 10-week program and graduated June 13 with the 255th Session.
And while most of the attendees have served 19 years or more in law enforcement and serve in executive-level positions, Angus has 16 years of experience and holds the rank of sergeant. Angus said the FBI only chose two to three people in the Iowa/Nebraska region.
"I was very fortunate to get in this early," Angus said. "I was very excited. I was kind of in shock because I sent in the application in 2008. So it was sitting in limbo for five years."
NCPD Chief David Lacy said being nominated into the FBI National Academy Program is the equivalent of "winning the Oscar.
"I'm tickled to death about it," Lacy said about Angus' graduation. "I think it's great."
While at the FBI academy on the Marine Corps base in Quantico, Va., he participated in advanced investigative management and fitness training. FBI academy instructors, specialized agents and staff members have advanced degrees and many are recognized internationally for their fields of expertise.
According to the the FBI academy's website, to be nominated for the program officers must be full-time employees, have at least five years of experience, be 25 years or older and in excellent physical condition, have excellent character and integrity, view law enforcement as a public service, have a high school diploma and agree to remain in law enforcement for at least three years after graduating from the FBI National Academy.
Law enforcement officers who attended the 255th Session with Angus were from 46 states, the District of Columbia, 17 international countries, six military organizations and five federal civilian organizations.
"A lot of it's refresher skills. The biggest thing that I took away from the training was the networking of all of the other law enforcement officers that were there," he said.
Lacy agreed that being able to network with other law enforcement officers around the world is a valuable asset that officers who've attended the academy can bring back to their home departments.
"Networking is a great thing. Chris not only has contacts nationwide, but has contact with people worldwide," he said.
Lacy and Angus are in a category all of their own because both have graduated from the FBI National Academy.
Just like Angus, Lacy was also a sergeant when he graduated from the 177th Session in 1994. He said Nebraska City is fortunate to have had two officers who've graduated from the program.
"I think it's a wonderful example that Nebraska City has a great police department," he said. "I'm proud of Chris. I'm proud of my participation in it and I think that Nebraska City should be proud that they had two officers that have participated in the program."
Angus said the opportunity to graduate from the FBI National Academy Program was the chance of a lifetime. However, it was hard for him to leave his wife, Stacy, and two daughters - Taylor, 19, and Kirstin, 17.
"The hardest part was just being away from my family for 10 weeks," he said. "I met a great bunch of guys … but it can't replace being away from your wife and kids."
Angus is a 1990 graduate of Nebraska City High School and former Marine. As a Marine, he began volunteering for the military's police training. It was then that he became interested in a law enforcement career.
He remembers his commanding officer asking him during an exit interview what he would like to do as a civilian.
"Give back to my community what they've given back to me and maybe be an influence on my community," Angus replied.
After being honorably discharged, Angus got married and moved to Arizona. He was working as a professional golf assistant and almost became a licensed real estate agent. Then he got a call from then-NCPD Chief Kent Roumph informing him that he got the job as a police officer back in his hometown. He took the job in August 1998. In 2005, he was then promoted to sergeant.
Along with being a NCPD sergeant, Angus is the head firearms instructor, head taser instructor and shift supervisor. He has been in charge of the K-9 Unit for 12 years as well. He's hoping to continue moving up the ladder to one day becoming the chief of police.
He is currently working on earning a bachelor of arts degree in criminal justice and minoring in business. He's hoping to obtain his degree in a year.