Rosemount Police Officer aims to shine the light,
gain the trust of the community
On a recent disturbance call, Rosemount’s new police officer, Andrew Graff, received comments from a resident who said he and a colleague calmed the disturbance situation and reassured them.
Graff was sworn in to serve the community and Rosemount Mayor Bill Droste led the ceremony at the August 17th regular council meeting.
Rosemount Police Chief Mikael Dahlstrom officially welcomed Graff to the public ceremony as more than 20 families and friends gathered to cheer on Graff as he took this important career milestone. Afterwards, all gathered to celebrate at a private reception at the Steeple Center.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the public ceremony has been delayed since Graff joined the police department in January 2021.
Graff’s wife Stacy pinned her police badge and gave her a big hug as her two young children watched and her family took videos and photos.
Dahlstrom praised Graff’s work ethic, saying he brings 10 years of active and reserve service with the US Navy as a First Class Uniformed Technician. He arrives in the city of Rosemount after working as a reserve police officer and a licensed police officer in the City of Big Lake.
“To accompany his passion for nature, he volunteers with Hometown Heroes, a 501C organization,” said Dahlstrom. The mission of this non-profit organization is to promote the spiritual and emotional benefits of exploring the great outdoors to veterans and active police officers. The program is now expanding its reach across the United States
“It’s pretty cool, and there are openings of all kinds of opportunity for all kinds of veterans all over the Midwest,” Dahlstrom said. The group gives camaraderie to men who go on hunting and fishing trips. This nonprofit will pay for an upcoming all-expenses-paid trip to Alaska for the young Waseca police officer Arik Matson, who survived a bullet to the head.
In an interview, Graff, 32, shared his journey that brought him to Rosemount.
Deciding to pursue a career in law enforcement was an easy and natural choice for him as he saw his father have a noble 33-year career. Today, her father is a retired medical police officer from Minnesota and her maternal grandfather worked in law enforcement.
“I care about people and I want to make a difference,” Graff said.
As a native of St. Paul, he graduated from Dassel-Cokato High School and studied criminal justice and graduated magna cum laude from St. Cloud State University. He attended the Alexandria Technical Police Academy and served in the US Navy from 2008-18 in the reserves and active duty.
Asked about his work in a profession that is now the subject of national and state scrutiny by many Americans, Graff explained how he wanted to become an effective police officer who continually works to earn the trust of the public.
“I think there are three groups, those who love law enforcement, those who hate law enforcement and those on the fence, and I want to make a difference and do it with dignity and respect and light up a dark area, ”Graff said.
Settling in Big Lake with his wife Stacy and their two children aged 7 and 5, Graff said the long drive is okay at the moment, but his family will be looking to be closer as they have close relatives. who lives in Rosemount. .
As the founder of Hometown Heroes, an outreach program for veterans and police officers, Graff said he finds reward as an event coordinator in planning outdoor adventures.
“We want to show them a good time in basic outdoor recreation,” he said. These fishing and ATV trips can become like a moment of Mother Nature therapy, especially during this tough year in Minnesota for everyone including law enforcement.
Introducing his father to the events of Hometown Heroes has been therapeutic for him. As a son, his father’s experience with the band also gave him a sense of peace because his father is struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder. .
The camaraderie with other veterans works, Graff said. Even though wives can offer emotional support to their husbands, Graff said sometimes men just need to spend time with other men who are veterans, who have been through the same deployments, have the same emotions and had the same feelings. sand in their boots.
Dahlstrom said, “He (Graff) believes that well-treated agents will be better able to maintain a positive attitude, and the attitude he brings to our department is special, always very respectful and positive, easy to hire and we get several compliments when he makes calls with residents.