(Questions may be directed to Caribou Police Chief Michael Gahagan)

Annually the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks seeks nominations for the Enrique S. Camarena Award, which honors law enforcement officers who have made a significant contribution in the field of drug prevention and who personify the belief of Drug Enforcement Agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena that “one person can make a difference”. The Aroostook Chiefs of Police Association has submitted the nomination of Interim Sheriff Shawn Gillen for this award.

Special Agent Enrique Camarena was a DEA Agent murdered by a Mexican drug cartel, while he was investigating drug trafficking into the United States. He was brutally tortured and killed in 1985. His death gave rise to Red Ribbon Week, celebrated at this time of year, during which young people are asked to commit to a drug-free life.

Criteria for consideration for the Enrique Camarena Award are that the individual must be a law enforcement professional who is a positive role model, committed to a healthy lifestyle, and who has made an outstanding contribution in the field of drug awareness or prevention, while going beyond the normal responsibilities of his position.

In submitting the nomination, Caribou Police Chief Michael W. Gahagan, chairman of the Association said, “The Chiefs of Police in Aroostook County have all agreed that Sheriff Gillen fits the criteria for this award and is very deserving.”

Chief Gahagan further stated, “Interim Sheriff Gillen’s dedication to the people of northern Maine and passion for his job is evident in his work. He has been a proponent of the National Drug Take Back Day, held twice a year, and assists with coordination of that for the entire county. He helped initiate a prisoner volunteer service and continues it under his authority, a program that helps rehabilitate inmates and promotes community involvement while giving back to the towns and cities of Aroostook County.”

Chief Gahagan concluded by stating, “Interim Sheriff Gillen’s values, morals and ethics are admirable and his career is commendable. His employees look up to him as their leader. He is very worthy of this award.”

The nomination of Interim Sheriff Gillen will now be evaluated by the Special Assistant to the Maine Elks Association Drug Awareness Program Chair for submission as the State of Maine nominee to the national Drug Awareness Program chair.





Endorsements continue to pour into the Gillen for Sheriff Campaign

Aroostook County District Attorneys (1989 – 2018) Endorse “Gillen for Sheriff”

Blaine, ME – The Gillen for Sheriff Campaign is proud to announce that the current and retired Aroostook County District Attorneys are endorsing Shawn D. Gillen as Aroostook County’s next Sheriff.

Todd R. Collins, the current District Attorney, is adding his name to the long and ever growing list of active and retired public officials endorsing the candidacy of Acting Sheriff Shawn Gillen. Collins, a Fort Kent native and resident of Presque Isle, is the elected chief prosecutor for Aroostook County and has worked closely with Acting Sheriff Gillen since 2002. D.A. Collins said, “I’ve worked with Shawn for over 16 years prosecuting all kinds of crimes, from the simple to the very complex. Regardless of the case, he always brings his “A” game. He is always ready to learn a better way to do something and to teach what he has learned, even if that means constructively challenging the normal way things are done. I can positively say that over the last 16 years Shawn has made me a better prosecutor.” Collins has been the District Attorney since 2011.

Retired Aroostook County District Attorney Neale T. Adams, previously of Presque Isle and now of Hampden, ME is also adding his voice to the chorus of criminal justice professionals encouraging voters to join them in supporting Acting Sheriff Gillen. Adams, who was the chief prosecutor in Aroostook County from 1989 to his retirement in 2011, also worked closely with Acting Sheriff Gillen and knows him well. Mr. Adams had this to say: “I don’t know everything about him, but I know the important stuff: he is honest, good natured, hard-working, smart, caring, effective and experienced in all that counts. Pity I moved from the County and cannot vote for him this year.”

Asked what he thought of these continuing, high profile endorsements Cyr Martin, of Eagle Lake, said, “Shawn is one of those guys that you always know you can count on to look you straight in the eye and tell you the truth…good or bad. I really believe that is why so many of our colleagues in the criminal justice community are offering their public support.” (Cyr Martin is the Chief of Police and Town Manager in Ashland and joined ALL of the area police chiefs in endorsing Acting Sheriff Gillen last month.)




FROM: NEPBA Local 601 – Aroostook County Deputy Sheriffs Association

CONTACT: Matthew Cummings, Vice President

Deputy Sheriffs Union Unanimously Endorses Acting Sheriff Shawn Gillen as “the only choice”

Fort Fairfield, ME – The union representing every full-time Deputy Sheriff is formally endorsing the candidacy of Acting Sheriff Shawn D. Gillen, of Blaine. NEPBA Local 601, also known as the Aroostook County Deputy Sheriffs Association, recently polled its membership and received unanimous support from every active member to offer this endorsement. All of our unit’s career retirees were also contacted and they want their voices added to this endorsement.

Acting Sheriff Gillen is well known to all of us and we know him to consistently be the type of person who will look you in the eye and tell you the truth, whether he believes you are going to like what he says or not. This is something we have become accustomed to and appreciate. We have all worked with him, some of us for as much as 20 years, and this is who he is and who he has always been. For us, there is no character trait we hold more important in a leader.

Acting Sheriff Gillen demands a drama free work environment and does not condone chaos as a method to manage personnel. He listens to ideas and takes employees’ viewpoints into consideration. He is a hard worker and is available any time of the day or night that we need him. He has done most of the jobs throughout the agency and has a keen working knowledge of every element and function of the Sheriff’s Office. He has proven his ability to manage a multi-million dollar budget and hold the line on expenses, while making sure staff has the training and equipment they need to be as safe as possible in an often challenging environment. As evidenced by the groundswell of support from his colleagues, he also knows the value of building and maintaining professional relationships that benefit the people we serve.

The morale of our unit is high, we are being paid a fair wage, we have the best equipment available to our profession and we have the unwavering support of our entire leadership team when we have done our jobs within the expectations they have set forth. Even when it is necessary for leadership to hold an employee accountable for a lapse in judgement or an error that could have been avoided, remedial action is carried out in a fair and consistent manner across the board.

Historically, organizations like ours have been very selective about inserting their opinions or endorsements into political campaigns to elect their own boss. Concerns such as, “you need to be careful not to back the wrong horse” and “you could face the wrath of the other guy if things don’t go in your favor” are worthy of consideration. Therefore, we truly do not take this endorsement lightly. In the final analysis, however, we just don’t feel that in this election cycle Aroostook County is faced with the choice between two, acceptable outcomes for those we serve…only one. For that reason, we feel obligated to share with our neighbors and friends what our years of interaction have taught us about Acting Sheriff Gillen. We are hopeful they may take our experience into consideration when deciding their vote in just a few short weeks.

It is important to note that more than 50% of our membership is not even registered in the same political party as Acting Sheriff Gillen. This has no impact as we believe the focus should not be on political parties, but rather on character and track record.

The Constitutional Office of the Sheriff has many responsibilities and by its very nature comes with much, unchecked authority. This level of responsibility and individual power must only be bestowed upon mature, honest, stable and fair individuals who respect that authority more than they desire it. In our collective opinion that person is, without hesitation, Acting Sheriff Shawn Gillen. We ask that you join us, all of your local police chiefs and so many others who have come forward in support of Shawn Gillen as our next Sheriff.


September 7, 2018
From the Gillen for Sheriff Campaign
For more information, contact Shawn D. Gillen – 207-521-4158 –

Every Aroostook County police chief personally endorses Shawn Gillen for Sheriff

I am humbled and proud to announce that all of Aroostook County’s active police chiefs have pledged their personal support and have authorized my campaign to release their personal endorsements of my candidacy for the Office of Aroostook County Sheriff.

These endorsements come from people I respect; people I have worked with over the last 24 years with the Sheriff’s Office. These people know me and they know my opponent. I was honestly not expecting this level of public support from the chiefs, as that is not common in a race for Sheriff. That makes it even more humbling.

Below are my colleagues who have pledged their support:

Thomas Pelletier – Fort Kent
Ross Dubois – Madawaska
Michael Bressett – Van Buren
Cyr Martin – Ashland
Michael Gahagan – Caribou
Stacy Mahan – Limestone
Robert Thibeault – Washburn
Shawn Newell – Fort Fairfield
Timothy DeLuca – Houlton

I have also been authorized by retired, long time Presque Isle Police Chief Naldo Gagnon and Presque Isle’s Deputy Police Chief, Laurie Kelly, to announce their endorsement of my candidacy.

Chief Tom Pelletier, Fort Kent – “I have worked with Shawn for a lot of years and we have a great working relationship. While we may be registered in different political parties, party politics should not matter. I feel strongly that Shawn is the best candidate to continue moving the Sheriff’s Office in a positive direction.”

Chief Shawn Newell, Fort Fairfield – “Shawn Gillen has a proven track record for supporting others and providing the best possible services to the citizens of Aroostook County. He is a hard-working, honest leader who has everyone’s interests in mind. Integrity, compassion and honest leadership is what we will have with Shawn as our Sheriff.”

Chief Ross Dubois, Madawaska – “I am supporting Shawn Gillen because of his proven leadership, extensive law enforcement experience, strong ethical character and ability to work well with neighboring law enforcement agencies. Shawn’s experience will strongly benefit the residents of Aroostook County. “

• It is important to note that these are personal endorsements, and are not made on behalf of the agencies or governmental entities for which they are employed.