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IAWP International Recognition and Scholarship Officer for 2010


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Chief Commissar Edlira Zoto

Albanian State Police


Co-Chairs Cindy Shain and Linda Mayberry and members of the IAWP International Scholarship Committee are very proud to announce the recipient of the 2010 IAWP International Scholarship, Chief Commissar Edlira Zoto, Albanian State Police. The process was very competitive this year. Forty applications for the award representing police women from 24 countries around the globe were submitted from a very impressive and professional group of police women.


Edlira Zoto is a five and-a-half year police officer, with the rank of Chief Commissar, serving in the Albanian State Police (ASP) – the national police of the Republic of Albania.  She promoted to this rank the same day when she received notification of being the IAWP International Scholarship recipient. Her new position is Specialist of the newly created Quality and Diversity Affairs Section within the ASP General Directorate.


Chief Commissar Zoto began her career upon graduation from the Tirana Police Academy in 1997.  She has served in a security role at the American Embassy in Tirana from 1998-2004.  From 2004-2005, she served as a Specialist in the Analysis Directorate of the Albanian State Police, where she reviewed the data records system and improved the way information flowed within different levels of the agency.   From 2005-2006, Chief Commissar Zoto served as a liaison in the INTERPOL office in Tirana, where she was responsible for a number of arrests involving wanted persons as a result of successful cooperation with other INTERPOL Offices in different European countries. Since 2006, she has served as an instructor in the Instructor Development and Field Training Officer Section of the Police Training Center, where she has developed programs for Instructors and FTOs and introduced new training methods and a high level of instruction.


Chief Commissar Edlira Zoto holds two bachelor degrees, one in the Police Management from the Albanian Police Academy and the other in Finance Management from the Faculty of Economic of the University of Tirana. It is her conviction that progress in our career should be dominated by the advanced concepts.
Chief Commissar Zoto enjoys promoting the values of female police and their significant role for police in Albania. She reads books in English about policing approaches in Western countries in order to “understand the role of female police officers within their own organizations and to apply the best experiences in the Albanian State Police.” 
Chief Commissar Zoto is married to Artur Zoto, a former police officer. They have two sons. She believes in family values, which supported and inspired in her police officer career.
Chief Commissar Zoto plans to help establish an Association of Women Police in Albania and hopes that she will gain knowledge and expertise in building this organization from her participation and attendance of the 48th Annual IAWP Training Conference. Noting the theme of the conference in Minneapolis is “Strength Through Unity,” she states, “I would like to give my contribution to the international conference through sharing of experience and knowledge  that I have gained so far as (a) female police officer in Albania.” 
When Chief Commissar Zoto was notified of her selection for the IAWP Scholarship, she wrote to International Scholarship Committee Chairs, Cindy Shain and Linda Mayberry: “I am very happy and feel very honoured (to be) selected to take part in the 48th Conference of the IAWP. It will be a very big event for me and for all women of our police organization as well as for our ASP. Frankly, it endows me with a strong sense of pride and achievement. Moreover, I consider my participation in this remarkable activity as much a challenge to contributing to the further development of the IAWP as an opportunity to fulfill my aspiration to become an accomplished professional police officer.”

IAWP International Recognition and Scholarship of Distinction Officer
for 2010


Inspector General Sandhya Bharatha Das
Indian Police Service

Due to the generosity of an anonymous gift to the IAWP, a second IAWP International Scholarship applicant has been selected by Co-Chairs Cindy Shain and Linda Mayberry to attend the 2010 Annual Training Conference in Minneapolis this year.  This very generous donation has resulted in the selection of Inspector General Sandhya Bharatha Das, Indian Police Service, to receive the IAWP International Scholarship of Distinction.  


Inspector General Bharatha Das achieved her career goal of serving in the Indian Police Service (IPS) in 1988.  This service has helped me to be always among the people interacting with them, while serving,” she says. With 22 years of experience in the Indian Police Service, she serves as Inspector General (IG) of Police, Ernakulam Range, Cochin as well as the Nodal Officer for the Community Policing Project of Kerala in India. Throughout an illustrious career, she has implemented a number of innovative, imaginative and successful projects to fight violence against women.  The Janamaithri Suraksha Project - the Community Policing Project of Kerala - is now accepted throughout the country as the most successful model of Community Policing. 


IG Bharatha Das has had the distinction of being the “first” in breaking new ground and leading the way as a female in the Indian Police Service.  She has had the distinction of being the first woman Police Superintendent of one of the largest districts of Kerala in 2000, as well as the first woman Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of the Crime Branch, Kerala, where she served 4 years, supervising many important cases.  As DIG of Police, Thrissur Range, she introduced a Women’s Helpline in all three districts of the range.  This concept was approved by the Government of Kerala and later introduced state-wide in India.


Sandhya Bharatha Das was the first female to serve as Inspector General of Police of the Kerala Armed Police Battalions, where she provided leadership to the approximately 7,000 policemen! She was also the first women IG of Police over Traffic in Kerala, where she was responsible for a number of innovative projects which included the introduction of a mascot “Pappu the Zebra,” which became very popular.  In 2009, under her command, traffic accidents were reduced 6% for the first time in 10 years in the State of Kerala.


Thrilled with an opportunity to attend the IAWP Conference this year, IG Bharatha Das has attended two national conferences organized for women police in India, where she lead a contingent from Kerala.   She writes: “I would consider it a privilege to share 22 years of wide experiences in the Indian Police Service among Women Police Officers all over the world.  Opportunity to work in a very populous Country replete with innumerable Security issues and challenges in Law and Order and Crime Management, at leadership level, interacting with people and managing the vast human resources of Police organization has enriched my personality tremendously.”


IG Bharatha Das is well-rounded and has distinguished herself in her education and personal interests.  In 2005, she was awarded a Ph.D, completing her dissertation on “The Accessibility of Women to the Criminal Justice System and Customer Orientation of Police Personnel Towards Women.”  She holds a Post Graduate Degree in Zoology with rank and a Post Graduate Diploma in Management.  A prolific writer, her professional articles have appeared in publications like CBI Bulletin, National Police Academy Journal, and Kerala Police Journal.  She has also contributed to preparing Training Pamphlets for the Kerala Police. She is the recipient of the President of India’s Police Medal for Meritorious Service and the Best Police District Award of the Chief Minister of Kerala, along with a number of commendation and appreciation letters. 


Married and mother of one daughter, Hyma, she cares for an extended family consisting of her parents, in-laws, and a brother.  She describes painting as her favorite hobby, exhibiting her work in solo and group exhibitions, as well as award-winning literary pursuits, authoring 9 books in Malayalam; 4 books of children's literature; 2 collections of poems; one collection of short stories and one novel, apart from one book on Women Empowerment. 


“A highly active career in the Indian Police Service has moulded my personality as on today,” she relates.  She networks with other police officers through the website www.keralapolicehistory.com and looks forward to adding to her circle of sister law enforcement professionals and friends: “I am sure that through more International exposure I would be able to contribute more for the cause of better Policing and for the cause of gender equity in Police Services.”




Disclaimer: The www.IAWP.org website has made a reasonable effort to provide for translation. However, no automated or computerized translation is perfect and these systems are not intended to replace human or traditional translation methods. The official text of the IAWP website is the English version of the IAWP.org website. If any questions arise concerning the accuracy of information presented by the translated version of the website, please refer to the English edition of the website, which is the official version.  Webmaster, September 2011.