Posted on 8/31/13
By Lee Coleman
Now, after 39 years of protecting citizens, Zeis was rewarded for his efforts on Aug. 15 when the North Dakota Peace Officers Association presented Zeis with the prestigious Lone Eagle Award at their 102nd annual convention.
According to the NDPOA, the award is presented to a North Dakota peace officer, who, in the eyes of his comrades, has contributed guidance, inspiration and support throughout his career.
“It is quite an honor, especially after being in the business for 39 years,” Zeis, 62, said. “It’s not something I would have thought would happen to me throughout my career. It is a very prestigious award for a law enforcement officer.
“We have some great law enforcement officers in North Dakota. We have to because we have the lowest crime rate in the nation.”
Zeis, a native of Wales and married to wife Debbie, was quick to point out how important family and his staff were after winning the award.
“You have to have the support of your family and the people working for you,” he said. “I have a great staff and they are willing to do a good job.
“We take care of the law enforcement in Cavalier County and we run a Class Two jail that will hold prisoners for up to 90 days.
“In addition, we handle all 911 calls in the county because we have a stand-alone system here. It all takes a lot of work and you have to have a good staff for that.”
When asked to describe the brightest moment in his long career, Zeis paused before answering.
“It is hard to top this (award),” he laughed. “But the big thing has been making sure the people of this county were taken care of and kept safe.
“It is hard to explain how I felt when my name was called for the award. When you are picked by your peers for such an award, it is special.”
By winning the Lone Eagle Award, which symbolizes a Peace Officer who has soared above all others to serve as an Administrator of Justice, Zeis’ name will be placed on the Lone Eagle Plaque on display at the Law Enforcement Training Academy in Bismarck.
‘”I’ve seen a lot of people win this award over the years,” Zeis said. “To be picked for this award in that group of people is quite an accomplishment.
“To me, there is nothing like being a public servant. That’s who we are.”