Greater Westfield Chamber of Commerce

Westfield State University’s Criminal Justice Alumni Hall of Fame to induct Class of 2019

CONTACT: Troy Watkins,, 413.572.5523

Boston Police Department’s Gregory Long and the late Sean Gannon are among seven inductees

Westfield – Westfield State University’s Criminal Justice Alumni Hall of Fame will induct seven new distinguished members at its fourth annual ceremony on Saturday, April 6 at 11 a.m. in Scanlon Banquet Hall.

All inductees have significantly impacted the field of law enforcement and criminal justice, in either domestic and/or international locations. Founded by the University’s Criminal Justice Alumni group in 2016, the Hall of Fame recognizes its inductees’ individual accomplishments and contributions to the criminal justice field. As one of the University’s most distinguished and popular majors with national and regional rankings, the Westfield State Criminal Justice Department has more than 6,000 living alumni.

The brunch event is open to the public and students and faculty are encouraged to attend. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at

The Class of 2019 Alumni Hall of Fame inductees are:  

Sean Gannon ’07 (posthumous)
Sergeant Sean Gannon died in the line of duty on April 12, 2018. He leaves behind a legacy of high moral integrity, infectious humor, and collaborative work with colleagues. At Yarmouth Police Department, he served as the first K-9 Narcotics officer, and worked with the Emergency Management Unit and Proactive Anti-Crime Team since 2010. Prior to his work with Yarmouth Police, he served on Stonehill College’s Campus Police and was certified as an EMT and Life Saving Instructor. He held a master’s degree from Massachusetts Maritime Academy and was a graduate of the MBTA Municipal Police Academy. Sergeant Gannon often dedicated his time to the Big Brothers, Big Sisters Foundation.

William Hackenson ’73
William Hackenson recently retired after a distinguished career of 32 years with Federal law enforcement and 12 years with security/consulting. He served as a special agent with the United States Secret Service, deputy assistant inspector general with the Central Intelligence Agency, and a security consultant and contractor. His work within the Secret Service spanned 26 years, including presence at President Ronald Reagan’s emergency surgery following an assassination attempt. He received increasing levels of supervisory experience and 10 merit awards. Hackenson earned a master’s degree from National Louis University and served as an adjunct professor within the Department of Forensic Sciences at George Washington University. He resides in Boston.

Gregory Long ’92
Gregory Long was appointed last August as the superintendent-in-chief of the Boston Police Department by Police Commissioner William Gross. A 22-year veteran of the BPD, he previously held positions as superintendent of Bureau of Investigative Services, commander/lieutenant detective of the special investigations and homicide units, and commander/lieutenant of the Youth Violence Strike Force. He began his career as an officer in Mattapan and Dorchester and the Youth Violence Strike Force prior to promotions to sergeant and lieutenant. Long holds a J.D. from New England Law/Boston and is a native of Dorchester.

Kenneth McCarron ’76
Kenneth McCarron retired in 2017 after 37 years as a law enforcement professional, highlighted by 21 years as a supervisory agent and special agent with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, where he supervised up to 35 DEA personnel through complex federal drug and money laundering investigations, both domestically and abroad. In addition to accolades received from the U.S. State Department, U.S. Coast Guard and Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, McCarron received the DEA’s highest honor for his service, the DEA Administrator’s Award for Valor after helping save the lives of 13 citizens of the Bahamas following the destruction of Hurricane Floyd in 1999. He earned a M.S. in criminology from American International College and lives in St. Augustine, Fla., with his wife of 25 years, Lori.

Matthew Nye ’02
Matthew Nye is a special agent with the Diplomatic Security Services (DSS) in the Office of Mobile Security Deployments. For a decade, he has served in multiple overseas ports providing protection for U.S. ambassadors and other diplomats during periods of conflict and instability, including Yemen, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, and Pakistan. Following 9/11, he enlisted in the military, where he served as an infantry officer in the Army National Guard and deployed in 2006. He continued his service as a civil affairs officer in the Army Reserve after joining DSS, and deployed in 2015. Nye is a native of Chesterfield, Mass.

Barbara O’Connor ’85
Barbara O’Connor retired in 2016 after a career in law enforcement that spanned the course of three decades. She served the University of Massachusetts Amherst Office of Public Safety for 25 years, including eight years as Chief of Police. She also served in positions with additional supervisory duties and emergency planning/training initiatives at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and the University of Connecticut. O’Connor was recognized as the National Association of Women’s Law Enforcement Executives Women Leader of the Year in 2013. She holds a master’s degree from University of Massachusetts Amherst and a J.D. from Western New England School of Law. O’Connor resides in Champaign, Ill.

Brian Person ’95
Brian Person is a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), where he has served for 15 years. Previously, his career includes work as a criminal investigator in Massachusetts and positions within the U.S. Marshal Service, Federal Air Marshal Service, Bureau of Prisons, and the Connecticut Department of Corrections. He serves as the ATF representative of Massachusetts and crisis negotiation team leader for ATF’s Special Response Team for Region 2. Additionally, he hearned three Investigative Excellence awards and an Award for Excellence in recognition of his efforts during terrorism investigations of the Boston Marathon and 9/11 attacks. He holds a master's degree from Liberty University and served as an instructor for online criminal justice courses at Post University. Person is a resident of Wilbraham. Mass.

Former Professor L. Michael McCartney to receive Lifetime Achievement Award
In addition to the inductees, former Westfield State criminal justice professor L. Michael McCartney, Ph.D., will be awarded the Dr. Victor Ascolillo Lifetime Achievement Award. Dr. McCartney dedicated his career to teaching, inspiring, and educating students as well as presenting numerous proposals nationwide to criminal justice and law professionals. He holds a master’s degree from American International College and a Ph.D. from University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Founded in 1839 by Horace Mann, Westfield State University is an education leader committed to providing every generation of students with a learning experience built on its founding principle as the first public co-educational college in America to offer an education without barrier to race, gender or economic status. This spirit of innovative thinking and social responsibility is forged in a curriculum of liberal arts and professional studies that creates a vital community of engaged learners who become confident, capable individuals prepared for leadership and service to society.

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