BP officer honored by MADD for DWI enforcement
Mothers Against Drunk Driving has awarded Blooming Prairie police officer Dan Peach, left, with the outstanding service award for his efforts in getting impaired drivers off the roadways. He accepted the award with Chief Greg Skillestad. Submitted photo
Officer Dan Peach’s efforts in nabbing impaired drivers has attracted the attention of a statewide organization devoted to ending drunk driving.
On May 26, Peach received the Outstanding Service Award from Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) at a statewide banquet in Brooklyn Center. He was one of only three officers in the state to achieve the honor and the first to ever receive it in Blooming Prairie.
“I was honored to get this award from a great organization,” Peach said.
Most notably, MADD highlighted Peach’s 14 DWI arrests in 2021 for a small community of 2,000 residents.
Historically, Blooming Prairie hasn’t had a high volume of DWI arrests. Peach said in the recent years the entire agency had only a couple arrests during the entire year.
“Last year I really shined and got a bunch,” Peach said, noting his department and city administration has been very supportive of DWI enforcement.
Peach said he developed a knack for catching impaired drivers by working at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota. For the past six years, Peach has taken time away from Blooming Prairie to work at Sturgis. In a single year, he has made as many as 20 DWI arrests during the 10-day event, often capturing two to three DWIs with high alcohol levels in a single night.
“I’ve gotten really good with DWI enforcement because of Sturgis,” Peach said. “With the quantity out there, it helps me back in Blooming Prairie. Now it’s second nature for me.”
Peach will be heading back to Sturgis again in August for this year’s rally.
Each year MADD recognizes officers from across the state who focus on enforcement as well as education.
“We want to try to prevent people from being injured or killed,” Peach said, noting drunk drivers are a danger for all motorists on the roads. “Drunk driving is 100% preventable. I don’t feel bad for anyone who gets arrested for DWI.”
Peach is currently demonstrating DWI enforcement techniques to newer officers through his role as a field training officer. “Our full-time staff will be extremely proactive (in getting drunks off the roads),” he said. “It has been fun for me to show the new officers my passion for DWIs,” he added.
“We are taking a different approach than Minneapolis,” Peach says. “We aren’t reactive policing, but rather we are proactive.”
In addition to getting the statewide award, Peach also recently completed the first of three leadership training courses through the FBI-LEEDA trilogy program. He attended the supervisor leadership institute for one week in May in Clive, Iowa.
Peach called the training “an eye opening experience” for him. He said he learned how to be an effective listener and how to communicate with people.
Steele County Sheriff Lon Thiele was instrumental in helping Peach attend the course by finding him a scholarship.
Peach wants to attend the command leadership and executive leadership institutes in the future. He hopes the courses will help prepare him for future career advancement.