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SEARCH’s Top Practitioner Award for 2017 Honors Justice Official, Information Sharing Advocate Billy Clinton


Mr. Billy (Bill) Clinton

Mr. Billy (Bill) Clinton, Division Administrator for the Arkansas Crime Information Center (ACIC)—who is described as a “committed and passionate supporter and leader” in the evolution of criminal justice information sharing during his 35-year career—will receive SEARCH’s 2017 O.J. Hawkins Award for Innovative Leadership and Outstanding Contributions in Criminal Justice Information Systems, Policy and Statistics.

The SEARCH Board of Directors selected Mr. Clinton for the annual Hawkins Award, our highest practitioner honor, when they met in January during SEARCH’s 2017 Winter Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona.

SEARCH will present the award to Mr. Clinton the evening of July 25 at its 2017 Annual Meeting in Des Moines, Iowa. The ceremony will also honor other award recipients, including Members and Staff for years of service, and the recipient of SEARCH’s 2017 Cooper Award.

In selecting Mr. Clinton for this award, the Board cited his leadership and contributions both at the state level in Arkansas, but also nationally, by offering his time, energy, experience and expertise to initiatives that seek to improve justice information sharing services and policy.

ACIC is the state agency responsible for providing information technology services to law enforcement and other criminal justice agencies throughout Arkansas. Its principal role is to administer a comprehensive data system accessible by agencies in over 250 locations in the state, and which interfaces with the FBI National Crime Information Center (NCIC) and similar systems in the other 49 states. ACIC also collects and publishes statistics on crime, manages the crime victim notification system, and the state sex offender registry.

Lengthy Career, State Contributions

Mr. Clinton has served in the ACIC for nearly 35 years—first as a field agent, then as Training Manager, Operations Manager and his current position as Division Administrator. In this time, he learned the value and importance of information to the state’s law enforcement and criminal justice community.

As Division Administrator, Mr. Clinton oversees a staff of 24 with program responsibility for the Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS)/NCIC and Nlets functions for the state of Arkansas.

Through his foresight and leadership, Arkansas has successfully deployed several enhanced information sharing programs, including:

  • the sharing and receipt of interstate driver license images via Nlets
  • scrap metal tracking, and
  • a real-time electronic logging system used by pharmacies and law enforcement to track sales of over-the-counter cold and allergy medications (which contain precursors to the manufacture of methamphetamine).

In addition, he was instrumental in the successful implementation of the state’s victim notification system and justice information exchange platform, NAME.

Our nation’s criminal justice information sharing service is that much better because of Bill Clinton. Folks that have worked closely with Bill will tell you of a quiet and thoughtful man; one who is always prepared and knowledgeable… Bill has been a consistent and reliable force in our nation’s criminal justice community of over 35 years.
– Mr. Curt Wood (SEARCH Member–Massachusetts)

National-level Support

Mr. Clinton was nominated for the Hawkins Award by SEARCH Member Curt Wood (Massachusetts). In his nomination letter, Mr. Wood cited Mr. Clinton’s active participation in a number of national efforts, which include:

  • Serving as Arkansas’ long-time member to the FBI CJIS Regional Work Group
  • Serving as Arkansas’ representative to Nlets
  • Serving as President and Chair of Nlets’ Board of Directors
  • Serving as a member to the CJIS Advisory Policy Board, as well as its Security and Access Subcommittee and NG3 Subcommittee
  • Serving as Arkansas’ Alternate Member to the SEARCH Membership Group.

“Bill…has been a passionate and thoughtful voice” in national discussions and continues to “provide insight and leadership in the crafting and implementation of policy, as well as practical systems functionality for our nations’ law enforcement and criminal justice community,” Mr. Wood wrote.

In particular, Mr. Clinton’s leadership in Nlets drew on his commitment to and understanding of state priorities to ensure that that organization continually delivered and deployed mission-critical information sharing services at the local, state, national and international level.

“Bill’s ability to cut through competing agendas and prioritize what is really important is a hallmark of his career and leadership,” noted Mr. Wood, who lauded him for making a difference and doing so with integrity and without fanfare.

O.J. Hawkins Award

  • formally acknowledges an individual’s service, dedication, and contributions that have improved the justice community’s ability to develop and use criminal justice information.
  • past Hawkins Award recipients have made outstanding contributions that have a broad-ranging impact, often affecting multiple states, justice disciplines, or branches of government.
  • is the only nationally recognized, competitive award for contributions in the field of criminal justice information management
  • is named for Orville J. (Bud) Hawkins, who was SEARCH’s first Chairman and Executive Director.
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