The Badger State Sheriffs' Association (BSSA) is an association of the 72 Wisconsin Sheriffs.
In the fall of 2021, BSSA Executive Director Dean C. Meyer learned of an individual interested in making an anonymous donation to enhance the safety of law enforcement personnel in Wisconsin. In response, Meyer contacted the Law Enforcement Foundation of Barron County (LEFBC) to engage that organization’s partnership in accepting such a donation. Meyer and BSSA President Sheriff Nate Dreckman then undertook creation of the 2021 BSSA Safety First Initiative to survey the 72 Wisconsin Sheriffs on their safety needs.
A total of fifty-three Sheriffs responded to the BSSA Safety First survey with equipment needs that exceeded 1.4 million dollars. The results of the survey were provided to the anonymous donor who, reiterating a desire to help keep law enforcement officers in Wisconsin safe while handling high-risk events, determined to fully fund the requested equipment.
In late December, 2021, the LEFBC received a check for $1,500,729. The LEFBC, which will retain $35,000 to support its programming and investment in Barron County, is currently working with the BSSA to direct all other funds to the Sheriffs who responded to the survey to support the purchase of safety equipment.
Meyer has been BSSA Executive Director for more than 17 years. "Never has a private citizen stepped up like this to help support and keep law enforcement safe. During our phone discussions and while listening to the anonymous donor's desire to help, it brought tears to my eyes," said Meyer. "This generous donation is a blessing to many of our Sheriffs and their staff."
BSSA President, Grant County Sheriff Nate Dreckman has been involved with the BSSA for almost ten years and never before has a citizen offered so much to help keep law enforcement safe. "This equipment will help today and help for years to come. What a great thing for this person to do," said Dreckman.