For the past 10 years, the Benton Police Department has instilled a program that not only bridges the gap between officers and citizens, it is a chance for officers to connect and listen to citizens.
Karen Derfler Carter, secretary for Roller-Ballard Funeral Home in Benton, has been chosen as the 2011 Christine Roller Employee of the Year.
The award is given to the individual who demonstrates outstanding service and dedication to families served by Roller Funeral Homes.
A spokesman for the corporation said the honor is presented annually to the employee within the Roller organization who "best exemplifies the traits and skills demonstrated by the firm's founders, Denver and Christine Roller."
Carter joined the funeral home staff in June of 1984.
More than 70 bicycles for people of all sizes and ages, along with a plethora of various toys â€” $25,000 worth â€” filled a portion of the Benton Middle School cafeteria on Wednesday.
All those bikes and toys, thanks to the student-operated Elf Club, will spread Christmas cheer to hundreds of less fortunate families in Saline County.
"This day is all they (students) talked about," said Cindy Haltom, Benton Middle School teacher and Elf Club co-sponsor.