How do you make better policemen? For the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives, the answer to this question is one word: preparation.

“NOBLE ensures that police officers have opportunities for promotion, but it also provides appropriate services to the community,” said Gregory A. Thomas, national president of NOBLE. “With that . . . we are having our 40th anniversary event.”

July 16-20, 2016, in Washington, D.C., at the Wardman Park Marriott Park Hotel, NOBLE will present its 40th Anniversary Training Conference and Exhibition that aims to educate police forces with training sessions and workshops. From law enforcement leadership to women in law enforcement, NOBLE will provide conversations between officers for the advancement of law enforcement.

“I serve as the national president of NOBLE and act on an executive level,” continued Thomas. “I serve as a policy-making official and as the face of the organization. I travel the country to make sure that the voice of NOBLE is being heard.”

NOBLE, an international organization that has 60 chapters and represents more than 3,000 members at different management levels, is dedicated to providing solutions to law enforcement issues, and is heavily involved in local communities. NOBLE also operates programs with youth, such as mentoring, education and leadership development.

“We have a signature program called The Law and Your Community, in which we travel around the country and interact with youth,” said Thomas. “We teach them what policing is and what it is not.”

Among their discussions are the topics of citizenship, basic laws and productive communication with officers. Targeting young people between the ages of 13 and 18, the program aims to improve interactions with law enforcers and comprehension about local, state and federal laws.

“The discussion is an ongoing conversation with youth and their parents,” said Thomas. “We also talk about pursuing careers in law enforcement.”

In conclusion, Thomas talked about his aspirations for the organization.

“I want us to continue to be the voice we have been for 40 years,” he said. “We are a voice for law enforcement.”

Expected at the 40th anniversary conference are former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, the Hon. Muriel E. Bowser and the Hon. Stephanie Rawlings-Blake.