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Presidents Letter:  2022 Conference at Le Mars: July 10th-12th

Good afternoon all.  Before we know it the 2022 conference will be here and everyone already midway through the summer vacation plans.  We have several officers already registered for the conference which is great to see but we have plenty of room for more.  The Le Mars Chamber is currently working on some sort of gift certificate for different businesses in town if you so choose to shop, explore or just relax at our local brewery.  I believe he have a good conference planned with plenty of delicious Wells Blue Bunny Ice Cream during the day!  I am attaching a bio of Officer David Gomez who will be presenting all day on Monday.  He has been a pleasure to get to know and talk with over the last couple months.  

Remember to submit your essay winners to Cameron VanZante at cameronv@warrencountyia.org.   Other nominees for: 5 Star Teacher Award, 5 Star Volunteer Award, Peer Recognition Award (Outstanding D.A.R.E. Instructor), and Lifetime Achievement Award can also be emailed to Cameron. 


There is a slight adjustment to the schedule for Tuesday.  We have the honor and privilege to welcome our Regional Director, Rafael Morales to the conference this year to present the new Social Media Training and the new Elementary Vaping lesson.  That training will take place from 8:00-10:00.  The Fusion Center will present from 10:00-11:30 on a few human trafficking cases and the new trends on what they are seeing with that.  The conference will conclude shortly after 12:00 so everyone can be on the road by 12:30.  


This is a great opportunity this year to have Rafael here so encourage every D.A.R.E. Officer to attend.  If you have any questions about the conference, please don't hesitate to ask.  I have attached the registration form and agenda for the conference as well.  Have a great rest of the school year and see everyone in July!


Continue to encourage other D.A.R.E. Officers to get registered for this years conference in Le Mars held July 10-12.  We are excited to welcome everyone to our community this summer!

Any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me.  Our featured Speakers Bio can be seen below.


Thank You 


Justin Daale #910

Assistant Chief

Le Mars Police Department

205 5th Ave. NW

(712) 546-4113

Iowa D.A.R.E. 2022 Conference

Sunday July 10, 2022

                12:00-3:00           9 holes of Golf at Willow Creek for early conference arrivers

                3:00-4:45              Hotel Check-in

                5:00-5:05              Legion Present Flags to kick off Conference

                5:05-5:10              Le Mars D.A.R.E. Welcome to Le Mars

                                                Mayor Bixenman Welcomes attendees

                                                Le Mars Chamber present with information about Le Mars

                5:10-5:45              Guest Speaker Mike Wells

                5:45-6:30              Meal served by Central Catering

                6:40-7:00              Award presentation

                7:00                        Closing

Monday July 11, 2022

                7:45-8:00              Breakfast Social

                8:00-11:30           Guest Speaker Officer Gomez, SRO from Idaho

                11:30-1:00           Lunch on your own at Le Mars restaurants

                1:00-3:00              continuation of Officer Gomez presentation

                3:00-3:30              Return to hotel

                3:30-6:00              Tour of Perry Creek Dairy for interested attendees & family

                6:00                        Supper on your own at Le Mars restaurants

Tuesday July 12, 2022

                7:45-8:00              Breakfast Social

                8:00-10:00           Reginal Director Rafael Morales (Social Media and Vaping Lessons)

                10:00-11:30         Iowa Fusion Center

                11:30-11:45         New D.A.R.E Iowa elected positions

                11:50-12:00        Closing remarks, sponsor thanks, and book pickup

                12:00                     Conclude 2022 Conference

                                                Hotel Check-out

Officer David Gomez




For over ten years, Officer David Gomez has been at the forefront of educating parents and youth about the many dangers of social media on electronic devices.  Officer Gomez has been a School Resource Officer for over eight years and works in the schools with youth most affected by digital devices.  Officer Gomez uses his collective information, and innate ability to stay current, to come up with best practice tips for parents and their kids to stay safe in an ever-changing world of digital citizenship. 


Officer Gomez has spoken to many groups, adults and youth, about the dangers of social media, normalization of drugs in social media, and the influence of drugs and alcohol on the youth population. Gomez has used his knowledge to assist the Idaho Crimes Against Children Task Force, as well as provide information to many police departments and community agencies, on internet predators. Gomez has operated multiple undercover social media accounts to arrest predators and track down missing children in his jurisdiction and beyond. You can find Officer Gomez educating others on YouTube, giving a Ted Talk, positively influencing youth in his hometown, and traveling the country helping youth (and parents) make better choices about digital devices and drugs and alcohol.


He speaks to youth, parents, professionals, and communities.


His topics include:

  1. Social Media Youth and Adult Trends
  2. Social Media Trends, including Drug Use & Abuse and Investigations
  3. The Normalization and Glamorization of Drugs through Social Media

Iowa DARE Officers Association

The I.D.A. (Iowa D.A.R.E. Association) was formed in the late summer of 1989 and had its first training conference for D.A.R.E. officers in the summer of 1990. It is a fraternal organization that includes D.A.R.E. officers, educators and other friends of D.A.R.E.

President: Justin Daale Le Mars Police Department

Vice President:  Cameron Van Zante  Warren County

Secretary:  Sara Kamm Dubuque County Sheriff's Department

Sgt. at Arms:  Rich Hollenbeck Howard County Sheriff's Department

Treasurer: Gary Bellinghausen  Carroll Police Department

Past President:  Kyle Vanotterloo  Spencer Police Department

Western Rep:  Vacant at this moment.  Kyle Van Otterloo and Gary Bellinghausen will currently fill this roll until it is filled.

The I.D.A. functions include planning and conducting yearly training conferences, preparing and releasing a quarterly newsletter, sending a representative to the National D.A.R.E. Officers Advisory Board and each year selecting a D.A.R.E. Officer, Educator and Volunteer of the Year. The I.D.A. also has a representative on the D.A.R.E. Iowa Board. Place your nominations for D.A.R.E. awards by submitting information to the VP of Iowa DARE Officers Association. All nominations must be received by May 1st of each year for the corresponding year.