Former Dallas Police Chief David Kunkle (right) pictured with Major Sam Cochran.
Former Dallas Chief Kunkle Receives Sam Cochran Award
NAMI awarded the 2010 Sam Cochran Criminal Justice Award to Chief David Kunkle, of Dallas. Named for Major Sam Cochran, the founder of the first crisis intervention team (CIT) in Memphis, Tenn., the Cochran Award honors outstanding work in the criminal justice system to deal fairly and humanely to people living with mental illness. Chief Kunkle was honored for his swift adoption of CIT in Dallas. Under his leadership, in less than one year, 1,000 police officers received the 40-hour CIT training. These officers serve more than 20 law enforcement agencies and span seven counties. Chief Kunkle has also instituted twice-yearly, day-long seminars on mental health issues. The award was presented during the criminal justice symposium by John Dornheim, president of NAMI Texas.