JOHNSTOWN - Longtime local educator David Wiltey - who served for nearly 30 years as coordinator of the Fulton County STOP-DWI Program - recently retired from that post.
The STOP-DWI Program involves services and programs for police, the public and school children aimed at keeping intoxicated drivers off county roads and streets. Funds for the program come from fines meted out by judges against drunken drivers convicted in their courts.
Wiltey started the county's free taxi ride program on New Year's Eve, and was instrumental in the post-prom parties that provided a safe environment for area high school students on prom night.
Fulton County STOP-DWI Coordinator David Wiltey, left, receives an award from former Traffic Safety Board Chairman Warren Greene at the board’s annual dinner recently at Pine Brook Golf Club in Gloversville.
Asked Thursday what he's most proud of during his county service, he stated: "I think the coolest thing is the intangible thing about the amount of lives you have saved."
"I loved the job," he added.
The 55-year-old Wiltey was recently honored for his service to the county at the Fulton County Traffic Safety Board's annual dinner at the Pine Brook Golf Club in Gloversville.
The board oversees the STOP-DWI Program, as an advisory group for the Fulton County Board of Supervisors. Program funds are coordinated through the county District Attorney's Office.
Wiltey is retiring from county service, but continuing part-time as a technology teacher for the Broadalbin-Perth Middle School. The Rockwood resident also is a former K-12 building principal for the Oppenheim-Ephratah Central School District.
Traffic Safety Board Chairwoman Margaret Luck said Thursday that Wiltey was honored by various people recently, as he stepped down as STOP-DWI Program coordinator. Those accolades included thanks from the four district attorneys he worked with - former DAs William H. Gritsavage, Richard C. Giardino and Polly A. Hoye, and current DA Louise Sira. Giardino and Hoye are now Fulton County Court judges. He also received certificates from state Sen. Hugh T. Farley and state Assemblyman Marc W. Butler.
"He's done a fantastic job and doing outreach as far as making a difference preventing drunk driving," Luck said.
A replacement for Wiltey's post has not been named yet.
Wiltey served as Fulton County STOP-DWI Program coordinator from 1983 to the present. He worked with the Traffic Safety Board to initiate several programs such as: police and sheriff DWI overtime patrols, purchasing many pieces of equipment for the county, advertising, investigation of road safety in the county, the ENOUGH campaign, post-prom parties, student billboard program, STOP-DWI Soccer Tournament, Victim Impact Panels, New Years Eve free taxi program, and STOP-DWI scholarships.
"Drinking and driving is everyone's problem," Wiltey said.
In addition to teaching and serving the county, Wiltey coached scholastic soccer, baseball, field hockey and midget hockey. He also has served as a driver-education instructor.
Wiltey also previously qualified for the U.S. Olympic trials in kayaking, placing seventh in the finals. He has won more than 50 medals in the Empire State Games for the Adirondack Canoe and Kayak Team.
He and his wife, Bonnie, reside on Route 29. The couple have two sons.
Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org