Richard Gauthier, Executive Director
Executive Director Richard Gauthier served with the Bennington Police Department for 30 years, the last twelve of them as Chief of Police, before coming to the Vermont Police Academy. His last three years included responsibilities as the Emergency Management Director and Public Safety Director for the Town of Bennington. In addition, he was an adjunct faculty member at Southern Vermont College for 20 years, teaching a variety of criminal justice courses.
Director Gauthier holds a B.S. in Criminal Justice from Southern Vermont College and a Master’s in Justice Administration from Norwich University. He is also a graduate of the 212th Session of the FBI National Academy at Quantico, VA.
Director Gauthier lives in Shaftsbury, VT, with his wife of 28 years, Cynthia.
Cindy Taylor-Patch, Director of Training
Cindy Taylor-Patch joined the Academy staff in September 2002. Cindy has a Master’s degree in Forensic Psychology with emphasis on police psychology, criminal behavior, research & statistics. Prior to coming to the Academy she worked in the mental health field, primarily as a Crisis Clinician working with individuals who were experiencing suicidal thoughts, depression, psychosis, in need of detox from drugs or alcohol, or dealing with a variety of other issues. Her main interests are police trauma & suicide, mental health, disabilities, and alcohol & drug-related training. She has taught many officers, other first responders and community professionals around the state about the dangers of Methamphetamine and is on the Vermont Meth Task Force. Cindy is also an advisor to the Vermont State Police - Hostage Negotiations Unit.
Drew Bloom, Director of Administration
Bob Ryan, Canine Training & Curriculum Development Coordinator
Bob Ryan joined the staff in February 2005 as the canine training coordinator. Bob worked for the Town of Barre Police Department as a full time officer for five years after working approx. five years for them as a part time officer. He then worked for the City of Barre Police Department for over 19 years. The majority of those years were spent as the second shift sergeant. He still continues to work part time as a patrol officer. Bob has been a canine handler since 1982. He is currently working with his forth canine, Jake.
Bob enjoys spending time with his family, hunting, fishing and riding motorcycles.
Bob lives in Barre with his wife Patty, daughter Anna, son Robert, canine Jake and at last count five cats. They also share their backyard with deer, turkeys and occasionally a black bear.
Gail Williams, Administrative Services Coordinator
Gail joined the Academy staff in January 2005 as the Program Services Clerk and in 2006 was promoted to Financial Specialist II. She previously worked in elementary schools while completing her Associate of Science Degree in Accounting through the Community College of Vermont. Gail lives in Forest Dale and enjoys spending time with her family.
Ken Hawkins, Training Coordinator
Jason Williams, Training Coordinator
Jenn Firpo, Training Coordinator
Leslie Bodette, Training Coordinator