On July 1, 1970, the Consolidated Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (CLETC) was established as a bureau under the Department of Treasury. Located in Washington, D.C., CLETC graduated over 7,000 students from 1970-1974. The Participating Organizations at that time were the Department of Interior, Department of Justice, Department of State, Civil Service Commission (now Office of Personnel Management), Bureau of the Budget (now Office of Management and Budget), Post Office Department (now U.S. Postal Service), and the Smithsonian Institution.
In 1975, CLETC was rebranded as the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC) and relocated to Georgia to occupy the former Naval Air Station Glynco. The first class that began at FLETC-Glynco was a Basic Police School program, comprising 30 Security Guard students from the U.S. Mint, Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Walter Reed Army Hospital, and the Government Printing Office.
The Basic Police School was a five-week course that included training in the areas of use of force, firearms, basic combative techniques, criminal behavior, and vehicle tactics. In the first year of operation, FLETC graduated over 5,000 students from 22 basic and advanced programs. There were 170 full time training staff members, mostly comprising detailed instructors from 26 Participating Organizations. FLETC received praise in the Atlanta Journal Constitution as the “West Point of Law Enforcement” in an article published on August 24, 1976.
Nearly 50 years after its establishment, FLETC has training delivery points located at Glynco, Georgia; Artesia, New Mexico; Cheltenham, Maryland; and Charleston, South Carolina. Additionally, FLETC has an office in the National Capital Region, and provides management support to the International Law Enforcement Academies (ILEAs) in Roswell, New Mexico, and Gaborone, Botswana, and programmatic support to the ILEAs in San Salvador, El Salvador; Bangkok, Thailand; and Budapest, Hungary.
Currently, FLETC relies on nearly 1,200 federal employees and on average 1,866 contract employees to carry out its training mission. There are over 95 Participating Organizations training in more than 800 basic and advanced training programs. In 2018, FLETC delivered 73,816 trained law enforcement officers and agents to the field.
Susan Thornton Part II
Former Chief Protocol and Communication Office Susan Thornton served Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (FLETC) for 13 years from 2003 - 2018 in Glynco, Ga. In celebration of the FLETC 50th Anniversary, Thornton talks in this edition, about what it means to be a FLETC employee and our mission to prepare the federal law enforcement community to safeguard the American people, our homeland, and our values.
Susan Thornton Part I
Former Chief Protocol and Communication Office Susan Thornton served Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (FLETC) for 13 years from 2003 - 2018 in Glynco, Ga. In celebration of the FLETC 50th Anniversary, Thornton talks about the creation of FLETC Community Day for local community law enforcement officers, first responders, judicial staff and their families expressing gratitude for their dedicated service in recognition of National Police Week.
Jim Pewitt, served from 2002 to 2018, as the Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers Wireless Programs Manager and held five additional managerial roles during his 16 years with the Chief Information Office in Glynco, Ga.
William Kelso, a previous Director, Office of Administration, served the Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers from 1972 to 1995. In memory of William "Bill" Kelso (1932 - 2020), FLETC will always remember.
Director Rinkevich Part III
Former FLETC Director Charles Rinkevich talks about the challenges that FLETC may face in the future.
Director Rinkevich Part II
Former FLETC Director Charles Rinkevich talks about the early days of FLETC Glynco and the creation of the FLETC Graduate Memorial which honors graduates lost in the line of duty. The memorial was dedicated during the first Peace Officers Memorial Day Ceremony held in May 1986. To read more on the memorial visit https://www.fletc.gov/fletc-graduates-memorial.
Director Rinkevich Part I
Former FLETC Director Charles Rinkevich talks about his time at FLETC. He reflect on FLETC’s early days and the challenges of coordinating a consolidated training environment.
Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers
Protocol & Communications Office