New Scholarship Announced for Criminal Justice Majors

Posted December 18, 2013

The Jeffrey L. Wendling Endowed Scholarship for Criminal Justice is the first named scholarship at ACU for criminal justice students. This fall semester the award was created by Jeff Wendling of Kerrville, who received his B.S. in Criminal Justice in 1971 from ACU. Besides encouraging students in their studies, it is also Wendling’s hope that creating this scholarship will help to encourage other criminal justice graduates to establish additional scholarships for our students. The Department of Political Science will put a plaque on the office lobby wall commemorating this gift as awards will begin this Spring semester.

Having most recently served as Chief of Police of Socorro, Texas, from February to September 2013, Wendling was previously Commanding Officer for the Support Services Division of the Kerrville Police Department from 2005 to 2012. Wendling holds the Master Peace Officer certification from the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officers Standards and Education, and he graduated from the FBI National Academy Session No. 242 in 2010.

Wendling began his law enforcement career in 1969 after being appointed as a Deputy U.S. Marshal for the Northern District of Texas serving in Abilene. In 1971 he began work in El Paso as a Special Investigator to the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Division of the Internal Revenue Service, and then transferred to Laredo where he was a Special Agent to the Bureau of Customs, Customs Agency Service. Wendling then began a long career in the Drug Enforcement Administration from 1973-2005. He was a Special Agent, Supervisor, and Country Manager in Laredo, Houston, Manila, Chicago, Rockford, and Dallas. Captain Wendling was assigned temporarily to DEA Headquarters as a class counselor to Basic Agent Class in 1980, the El Paso Intelligence Center in 1980, the U.S. Embassy Nassau in 1989, and the U.S. Embassy Seoul in 1993.

He has received numerous commendations including the DEA Excellence of Performance Award in Houston, 1989; the DEA Special Act or Service Award in Houston, 1991; and for counter-drug efforts in the Republic of the Philippines the DEA Exceptional Performance Award, 1999, and the DEA Excel- lence of Performance Award, 2001. Captain Wendling was presented the International Award of Honor by the International Narcotic Enforcement Officers Association in 1999 for work with the Philippine counter-drug initiative. Captain Wendling was the recipient of many certificates of appreciation and awards from law enforcement and intelligence agencies while assigned to the Philippines.

Wendling and his wife Freya have one son, Michael.