The police chief of Maine’s largest city has been named the state’s police chief of the year by a prominent law enforcement organization.

Portland Police Chief Michael Sauschuck was honored last weekend during the Maine Association of Police 18th annual awards banquet, according to a press release issued by city spokeswoman Jessica Grondin.

Sauschuck received the David W. Pickering award, named after the former Cape Elizabeth police chief who died in 2000 after a long battle with cancer. Pickering was a widely respected administrator and an ardent supporter of Maine law enforcement, Grondin said.

“I cannot say enough positive things about Chief Sauschuck, his leadership, strength and character as a chief and more importantly as a person are top notch and it is no surprise to me that he would receive this honor,” City Manager Jon Jennings said in a statement.

Sauschuck joined the Portland force as an officer in 1997. He was appointed chief of police in January 2012.

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