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Mount Made: New York’s Finest


As a police officer with the New York City Police Department, Blair Butler ’13 has made it her goal to protect the citizens of the greatest city in the world. It’s a job that takes a lot of courage, compassion, and curiosity—but it’s also filled with an excitement that keeps Blair at the edge of her seat (in her squad car, of course) throughout each shift.

“Every day on the job is different,” said Blair. “I love being an active member of the community, especially since there is always an opportunity to help others.”

Getting to where she is today took a lot of discernment and time spent reflecting on where she feels most comfortable—something she explored during her time at the College.

“I studied history and secondary education,” continued Blair. “I thought I was going to be a teacher, but I quickly found myself on a different path.” And it was clear her dedication to others would guide her in the right direction to find exactly what that calling would be.

But, before she launched her career as a police officer, Blair spent over three years working with long-term volunteer projects across the nation. She joined AmeriCorps, a national network of service organizations that address critical community needs, from fighting poverty to preparing for natural disasters and more. Partnering with FEMA, Blair worked on creating recovery plans and provided disaster relief for areas in California and Texas that were damaged by severe storms and wildfires.

Blair volunteering.

After 10 months with FEMA, Blair teamed up with another AmeriCorps partner, the St. Bernard Project (SBP). With an ambitious goal of rebuilding homes crippled by storms, Blair’s work with SBP gave her the opportunity to share her passion for disaster resilience and recovery in New York, Texas, and South Carolina.

And her call to volunteer didn’t stop there. She returned to Texas to spend time working as a disaster program specialist for the Red Cross in Houston.

Blair volunteering.

Her years spent volunteering across the country introduced Blair to thousands of people in need. It was then that she learned she felt most herself when she was helping others. The perseverance and tenacity she developed in her time as an AmeriCorps member drove her to a new calling: following her father’s footsteps by applying for a job with the NYPD.

Blair poses with her father.

A dedicated member of New York’s finest, Blair arrives to her station an hour early for every shift. She updates footage, meets with her supervisors, and catches up on new training and safety workshops. As a patrol officer, her day-to-day responsibilities can change in a moment’s notice—it all depends on what echoes over her police radio.

Every day Blair takes the lead in her sector—scoping out situations and helping residents in need—and readily responding as backup to more serious or threatening calls. Stationed on the Lower East Side, she’s even had the opportunity to work at some of the City’s most notable and impressive events in her first two years as an officer, including the MET Gala afterparty, the Veteran’s Day parade, and the New Year’s Eve celebration in Times Square.

Image of Times Square on New Year's Eve

Her favorite moment on the job so far? Escorting one of the floats for the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team at their ticker tape parade this past summer.

Blair poses with members of the US National Women's Soccer Team

Blair credits her journey as a law enforcement officer to her support system at the Mount, including Professor of History Joseph Skelly. As her undergraduate advisor and a veteran, Dr. Skelly inspired in Blair a sense of professionalism, a strong work ethic, and the responsibility to serve others—skills which have been indispensable in her work with the NYPD.

“Looking back at the Mount’s mission and the commitment to service-learning instilled in each member of the campus community, I know that my friends, classmates, professors, and mentors played a huge role in helping me find my calling.”

Blair poses with the Rangers.

And when she’s not keeping the streets of New York safe—or hanging with members of the New York Rangers at her precinct—Blair can often be found spending her time off with family, friends, and—of course—her dog.

Blair poses with her dog.

As for her next challenge? Signing up to run the NYC Marathon next fall.

“We’ll see what happens,” added Blair. “It’ll certainly be a challenge, but I’m ready to take it on!”

Are you Mount Made? Do you know other alums carrying out the mission of the College? Let us know—we’d love to share how the Mount launched your career. Contact us to be featured!

About the University of Mount Saint Vincent
Founded in 1847 by the Sisters of Charity, the University of Mount Saint Vincent offers nationally recognized liberal arts education and a select array of professional fields of study on a landmark campus overlooking the Hudson River. Committed to the education of the whole person, and enriched by the unparalleled cultural, educational, and career opportunities of New York City, the College equips students with the knowledge, skills, and experiences necessary for lives of professional accomplishment, service, and leadership in the 21st century.