LOOK who's in the paper today!!! :)
(School Resource Officer Steve Orton shows his sense of humor in
his choice of door decor to his office at Laconia High School.)
From the streets to the halls,
Steve Orton is now a familiar face in the halls of Laconia High School, as he is a few months into his second year as the school resource officer. A member of the Laconia Police Department for 10 years, Orton, who lives in Gilford with his family, was hired right out of the police academy he attended in Massachusetts by then-Laconia Police Chief Bill Baker. Orton said he loves his job because there's always something new to see or learn. He said the words of a police academy acquaintance best sums up how he feels about the profession. "Police work is like having a front-row seat to the greatest show on Earth," Orton said. "You get to see things and experience things that you wouldn't in any other career."He said he has particularly enjoyed the last year as a school resource officer, getting to know the students and teachers and staff of Laconia High School. While in a sense being a teenager hasn't changed much since Orton himself was in high school, he said the teens of today have to face many more dangers at a younger age. "The things that children are faced with today are inconceivable," Orton said. "Yes, when I was in high school, girls got pregnant and children used drugs, but the fact that they are starting now at such a young age to use drugs and have sex is mind-boggling." He said he really enjoys being able to talk to students about problems they may be facing and to offer positive solutions. "I've had some tough personal conversation with children about the things that are going on in their lives, things that I wouldn't have opportunity to talk about with them if I was on the street," Orton said. "I like that they trust me enough to talk me about their lives."In his spare time, Orton likes to spend time with his family, which includes his wife, Rebecca, and their four children, Kayla 13, Kaleb 12, Stevie 10 and Benjamin, 7. Most of all, he said enjoys being able to help or offer advice to students dealing with serious issues. Being the father of a large family has made Orton appreciate his father even more, though he said he always considered him a role model.Both his parents were teachers, he said, and placed an emphasis on education. " He has an old school work ethic, he's very grounded, very down to Earth, but also extremely intelligent," Orton said. "He placed education very high on the importance list." Orton said his father has always been a person he could depend on. "He was just that solid guy. He was just always there ... to kick me in the butt when I needed it and to hug me when I needed it." Orton said. Before moving to Massachusetts in 1996, Orton grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah, then attended college in Idaho, where he met his future wife, Rebecca. The two fell in love and wedded after he had spent about a year in college, taking criminal justice classes, Orton said. As his wife is originally from Massachusetts, the two decided to relocate. For a few years, Orton said he managed a Domino's Pizza franchise and was in a position to own a franchise when he realized he wasn't doing what he wanted to be doing. "It's just what I fell into," Orton said. He said it was at wife's prompting, who asked him if was really happy with his job, that he quit and decided to either go back to school or find a more fulfilling career. It was then he decided to go to the police academy, and the couple used most of their savings to support their growing family while he completed the six month training program. While Orton loves to go back to Utah to visit his parents and other family members, he said also loves life in the Lakes Region, so much so that he is hard pressed to find anything he would change about it. "I guess if I could change something it would be the mentality of some about the Lakes Region," Orton said, adding that he's proud of the way the communities pull together to do things like clean up a park or make it safer for children. "We do have something to offer here. I'd like to see us change our views about what's really important in the community," Orton said.
1. Name: Steve Orton People know you as: The students call me "Officer Orty" friends at work call me "Tiny."
2. Date and place of birth: Salt Lake City, Utah.
3. Occupation: Police officer in the city of Laconia.
4. How long have you lived in the area? Ten wonderful years
5. Who was your most influential role model? Easy, that was my father. I am still learning from him.
6. Where is your favorite place to go or your favorite trip or your favorite hike? My favorite (thing to do) is anything with the family, I do like to go back to Utah to see my family.
7. Favorite local business? Al's Auto, I can't say enough, other then they really help people.
8. Favorite food? Never met a food I didn't like.
9 Favorite book? Anything by James Patterson.
10: Favorite movie? John Wayne, pick one!
11. What do you spend too much money on? Diet Coke
12. What is the dumbest thing you ever did? The list is too long. But not listening to my parents.
13. What is your fondest memory? The day each of my children were born.
14. What item is no longer available that you would like to see return? Stompers, it was a toy I had as a child.
15. What do you think makes the Lakes Region a good place in which to live? The view, the lakes but most of all the people that have come into my life.
16. If you could change one thing about the Lakes Region, what would it be? Not sure.
17. If you could change one thing about the state, nation or world, what would it be? That world leaders must always tell the truth.
18. If you were to try any profession for a day, what would it be? To play in the NFL on Monday night.
19. If you won the lottery, what would you do? I don't play but if someone wants to give me the money I'll find something to do with it.
20. What would you like to be remembered for? A good father and husband and some day grandfather.