Press Release Article


Date: Nov 07, 2002
Press Release Number: 118-2002

Department Veteran Honored for Two Decades of Work With the Special Olympics

Port Authority Police Inspector Robert H. Belfiore, a 22-year veteran of the Port Authority Police Department, will be honored by the Italian American Police Society of New Jersey on Saturday, November 9, 2002, for his fundraising work on behalf of the New Jersey Special Olympics.

Inspector Belfiore, who oversees the Port Authority’s police command at Newark Liberty International Airport, helped found the New Jersey Law Enforcement Torch Run Committee for Special Olympics 20 years ago with retired Port Authority Police Capt. Joseph Hurtuk. In the two decades since, Inspector Belfiore has served as Deputy Director and Director of the philanthropic coordinating agency for New Jersey’s law enforcement community, which has raised more than $10 million to benefit Special Olympics. In 1995, he was elected to the International Law Enforcement Torch Run Hall Of Fame – one of only 30 law enforcement officers in the world who hold the honor.

\"For our first benefit, we held a Torch Run on a 44-mile course with very few officers and raised $7,000,\" Inspector Belfiore said. \"This year, we covered 800 miles with more than 1,200 police officers and we raised $1.5 million,\" he said.

Inspector Belfiore said the committee, made up entirely of volunteers, has raised more than $3 million in the past two years alone. Other fund-raising events include a Polar Bear Plunge into the Atlantic Ocean every February and annual golf tournaments.

\"I’m proud to be a part of this important program,\" said Inspector Belfiore, a 52-year-old married father of three who lives in Point Pleasant, N.J. \"It has been a very rewarding experience for me, and for all those involved, and I’m honored that the Italian American Police Society of New Jersey has recognized our contribution.\"

\"We’re all proud of Inspector Belfiore and his tireless efforts on behalf of Special Olympics,\" said Port Authority Police Superintendent Charles D. De Rienzo. \"While his primary job is to make Newark Liberty International Airport safe and secure for travelers, his philanthropic work shows how members of this department benefit their communities far beyond the work they do at Port Authority facilities.\"

Inspector Belfiore’s police career began with an assignment at Newark Liberty International Airport in 1980. He also has been assigned to the Port Authority Bus Terminal, PATH, the Port Authority Police Academy, and the George Washington Bridge. He was promoted to Inspector in 1998 and has been in charge of the police command at Newark Liberty International Airport for the past three years.

Inspector Belfiore will receive the Italian American Police Society of New Jersey’s Humanitarian of the Year award at the society’s Annual Gala Benefit Dinner Dance at the Fiesta in Wood-Ridge, N.J. The society, founded in 1985, has more than 5,000 members from local, county, state and federal law enforcement agencies.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates some of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia and Teterboro airports; the George Washington Bridge; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH rapid-transit system; the Downtown Manhattan Heliport; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency is financially self-supporting and receives no tax revenue from either state.

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