Mount Vernon Police Detective David O. Clarke received the Community Service Awards at The Westchester-Rockland Guardians Annual Scholarship & Installation Dinner Dance, Friday, March 18th at the Greentree County Club located at 538 Davenport Avenue in New Rochelle.
“Last night’s honor is one of the greatest highlights of my law enforcement career,” Det. Dave Clark shared with Black Westchester. “Especially being honored for what is the most important thing to me and that is giving back to the community. Just shows that by being authentic and sticking to doing the work good things will happen. God gives us two hands for a reason one for us and the other to help those in need”.
A native son of Mount Vernon, Detective David Clarke is happily married to his wife of 9 years Ginghi Clarke and has a Beautiful 24-year-old daughter Deja Clarke and 3-year-old son Dash CLarke born on the same day May 7th. He is a product of the Mount Vernon School District graduating from Mount Vernon High School in 1992. Detective Clarke then attended Old Dominion University graduating in 1997 with a Bachelor of Science in Sports Medicine with a minor in Physical Education.
From there Detective Clarke has been heavily involved with the at-risk teen population working as a Crisis Paraprofessional at Children’s Village and as a Recreational Therapist at Abbott House from 1998-2005. In August 2005 Detective Clarke was hired by the Mount Vernon Police Department and this is his current employer to date. Detective Clarke has worked patrol, uniformed patrol task force, plain clothes task force, the mayor’s detail, narcotics, gang unit, domestic violence unit, intel unit, bicycle unit, violent crimes unit, community policing unit and has currently found his niche in the Training unit. Detective Clarke is a certified Gang Specialist and in 2012 received the Gang Prevention Unit Of The Year Award for teaching the Step-Up Program to youth and officers to bridge the disconnect and communication gaps between youth and the police.
Detective Clarke is also a part of the PDC Foundation a non-profit organization created in 1998 by Brian Pritchett, Dana Doggett and David Clarke. The purpose of the PDC Foundation is to provide financial assistance and scholarships to Mount Vernon High School seniors who wish to pursue careers in education, arts/music and athletics. To qualify for the annual PDC Foundation scholarships, students have to maintain at least a 3.0 GPA, demonstrate outstanding citizenship and submit an essay. To date the PDC Foundation has given over $40,000 in financial assistance to Mount Vernon High School seniors who qualify. Besides financial assistance the PDC Foundation has also taken Over 80 students ages 12-18 out of the country to China in 2011, 2012 and 2013 and Japan 2019 respectively. The purpose of the overseas trip to China & Japan is to expose Mount Vernon students to the world and the educational impact that is going on in those countries. The students who qualify for this trip have to submit an essay and must participate in the 4 core pieces of the PDC Foundation which are, EDUCATION, COMMUNITY SERVICE, GLOBAL AWARENESS and PHYSICAL FITNESS. Detective Clarke’s ultimate goal is for the PDC Foundation to one day provide full scholarships for all of our scholarship winners. The PDC Foundation also hosts a 2-week basketball camp in the summer as well to fundraise to help Mount Vernon youth.
Detective Clarke volunteered from 2016-2109 as the Assistant Varsity Baseball Coach For Mount Vernon High School and is the 2nd Vice President of the PBA. Detective Clarke was recently featured in the documentary “Killing Beef” Ending Gun Violence In The black Community On RevoltTV. Detective Clarke was utilized in the 2021 Westchester County Police Reform & Reimagining Task Force on the committee for Qualifications and Recruitment. He is a Co-Creator of BOOKS & BADGES a group dedicated to increasing literacy for the youth in Westchester with Cynthia Turnquest-Jones & Detective Montika Jones.
In June of 2020 Detective Clarke was a part of a documentary called “Black, While Wearing Blue” by News12 & Reporter Michelle Brown which was recently nominated for 3 Emmy Awards on July 1st, 2021. On October 30th, 2021, The Story “Black, While Wearing Blue” Won 2 Emmy Awards For The Ride Along Interview With News12 Reporter Michelle Brown & Her Team. Detective Clarke’s primary goal in law enforcement is his obligation to helping the youth and with the PDC Foundation he is dedicated to this goal and will go above and beyond to help the lives of the children in the city of Mount Vernon and throughout Westchester.
Black Westchester salutes MVPD Detective Dave Clarke and congratulates him on the well-deserved Westchester-Rockland Guardians Community Service Award. Det. Clarke the epitome of Community Policing and an example for the youth or what good policing looks like.
About the Westchester-Rockland Guardians: The Guardians were organized in 1963, and later incorporated in 1965, to become the Westchester Guardians Association Incorporated. In 1967, the Organization expanded to include Law Enforcement Officers from Rockland County and became known by its present name, The Westchester-Rockland Guardians Association. The first President of the Guardians was the late, retired Lt. James A. Barrier of the Yonkers Police Department. The Guardians formed to provide a base for minority officers to address their needs, the needs of the community and have representation in all ranks of law enforcement. All members are expected to be productive in their departments, role models in their communities and to work to enhance conditions of all law enforcement personnel.
The Organization provides scholarships and mentoring to minority youth. Food, clothing, book and toy drives are arranged to assist Seniors, local Day Care Centers, Health Facilities, Community Centers, and disadvantaged families in Haiti and Africa. Its’ members engage in various community forums, focusing on topics such as Health and Wellness, Domestic Violence, and Public Safety awareness and strongly encourage recruitment, hiring and promotions of minorities in the Law Enforcement field.
The membership pledges to remain strong in their commitment to continuing the Organizations’ mission, to remain active in their communities and provide leadership to the youth of both Westchester and Rockland Counties.