Somerset County: Sheriff Darrin Russo Needs Your Help to Name Newest K-9 Officer

Somerset County Sheriff Darrin J. Russo announced a contest to name the agency’s newest K-9 officer, a male yellow Labrador retriever whose job will be to sniff out illegal drugs with his partner, Sheriff’s Officer David Daneker.

The contest winner will take home some cool Somerset County Sheriff swag and be invited to participate in the naming ceremony in Somerville with the other members of the K-9 Unit.

“Our K-9 officers and their handlers make a difference every day in the lives of Somerset County residents, with our K-9s taking millions of dollars of illegal drugs off the streets,” said Sheriff Russo in a press release. “Adding a new member to this Somerset County Sheriff’s family is always exciting, but we need the community’s help in giving our new K-9 Officer his name!”

Somerset County’s K-9 Unit was established in 2002 and has more than doubled under Sheriff Russo to nine K-9 officers and six skilled handlers. The demands of the position are unique within the Somerset County Sheriff’s Office, requiring handlers to be passionate and willing to dedicate their lives to law enforcement while assuming the many 24-7 responsibilities of a K-9 handler.

“We’re so excited to bring our newest K-9 officer to the battle against opioids that have damaged so many lives,” said Sheriff Russo. “And we want the community he will be serving to provide his new name to welcome him to the Somerset County family.”

All submissions can be made via email to Michelle Royer at The public can submit names until Monday, October 24, 2022, at 4 p.m.

Nine New Jersey Schools Receive A Big National Honor. Here's the list.

  • Cliffside Park School 4, Cliffside Park School District

    Cliffside park school

    Cliffside Park School 4 Mission Statement: “To instill that we are all “Learners Today, Leaders Tomorrow.” We strongly feel that it is important for all stakeholders to realize that in order to be successful in an area of life it is important to always be open to learning. At School Four, we consider our greatest strength to be our rich cultural, linguistic and cognitive diversity. Our students speak many languages and hail from all over the world, but are all united in that they come from families who value education and work in partnership with the school community to create a bright future for their children.”

  • Glendora Elementary School, Gloucester Township Public School District


    Glendora Elementary School Mission Statement: “Glendora Elementary School is a Kindergarten through Grade Five building with a long tradition of service to the community. We promote a friendly and secure environment with an emphasis on academic achievement, high expectations for student behavior and citizenship, and close family involvement. The comfortable size of the school allows our staff to get to know families very well and work with them in a special way.”

  • Frank Defino Central Elementary School, Marlboro Township Public School District

    frank defino central elementary

    Frank Defino Central Elementary School Mission Statement: “To provide a safe, nurturing environment of mutual respect while inspiring children to achieve their academic potential. Students are valued for their individuality and diverse capabilities and are taught to face the future and contribute to society with compassion, courage, knowledge, and vision.”

  • Edgar Middle School, Metuchen School District

    Edgar middle school

    Edgar Middle School Mission Statement: “Edgar Middle School offers its students a challenging and enriching educational experience. We strive to support the students’ academic, emotional and social growth and development. As we focus on the whole child, we empower students to strive for excellence in all aspects of their lives.”

  • Stony Brook Elementary School, Hopewell Valley Regional School District

    stony brook

    Stony Brook Elementary School’s Mission Statement: “At Stony Brook Elementary School, children are known by name, are listened to, and are recognized for their talents and accomplishments. We strive every day to uphold the Stony Brook mission: to seek the truth, to appreciate beauty, and to demonstrate goodness.”

  • Center Grove School, Randolph Township School District

    center grove elementary

    Center Grove School Mission Statement: “Center Grove… Our home away from home, where we are free to be curious, respected individuals, inspired learners, and future leaders creating better tomorrows.”

  • William J. McGinn Elementary School, Scotch Plains-Fanwood Public School District

    william j mcginn

    William J. McGinn Elementary School Mission Statement: “To provide students the Foundation to Grow, the Compassion to Give, the Imagination to Dream. McGinn students are given the foundational skills to be independent learners who problem-solve together. Students develop compassion for others, a sense of belonging and responsibility, and enthusiasm for human diversity. McGinn students leave McGinn School with the creative tools and imagination to express themselves and follow their dreams.”

  • Redwood Elementary School West, West Orange School District

    redwood elementary west

    Redwood Elementary School West Mission Statement: “At Redwood, our guiding light is Dr. King’s famous maxim that the true goal of education is to build students’ “intelligence and character.” We firmly believe that both intelligence and character are not fixed commodities, but rather that both can be developed. To that end, our academic programs are designed to grow our students’ abilities in each of the core subjects of English Language Arts, Math, Science, and Social Studies, along with enhancing their creativity through the Arts and Music, their health and wellness through Physical Education and Health, their language skills and cultural understandings through World Languages, and their facility with technology and research through Library & Media Arts. Redwood also places a premium on character development. Redwood is “The School That Cares,” and with this theme in mind we teach our students to care about themselves, each other, our staff, and our school itself. Through our R.O.C.K.E.T. character initiative, our students build the character traits of Respect, Open-Mindedness, Caring, Kindness, Encouragement, and Trustworthiness. We aim to give our students the tools that they need to be responsible, productive, and civic-minded citizens.”

  • Upper School, Englewood Cliffs School District

    upper school

    Upper School Mission Statement: “It is the mission of Upper School to strive for excellence in the academic, personal/social, and creative development of each individual student. This will be accomplished through the positive collaboration of our entire school learning community. The educational community will create a safe, nurturing environment that honors the cultural diversity of our students and our society. Our students will develop character and moral values that help them become productive members of our society. The educational family will develop responsible citizens that will respect and take pride in our national heritage.”