Quick Thinking, Life-Saving Actions Earn Department of Corrections Employee Governor’s Award for Excellence

Mechanicsburg, PA – On behalf of the Shapiro Administration, Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (DOC) Secretary Dr. Laurel R. Harry congratulates state Parole Agent Brian Clawson for earning a 2023 Governor's Award for Excellence. 

Agent Clawson was recognized for saving a child's life while on assignment. The two-year-old had accidentally ingested their mother's prescribed methadone and had become unresponsive before Agent Clawson and his partner responded, administered Narcan, and revived the child by the time emergency medical services arrived to the scene. 

"Agent Clawson is a true hero who embodies the DOC's commitment to public safety," said Secretary Harry. "When rapidly changing circumstances called for swift and decisive action, Agent Clawson was not only trained and prepared, he also answered the call without hesitation and placed the life of that child above everything else."

On May 19, 2022, Agent Clawson was serving as a member of the DOC's Fugitive Apprehension Search Team (FAST) and was part of a U.S. Marshals Service task force in Cambria County. Along with his partner, Deputy Clint Divido from the Cambria County Sheriff's Office, Agent Clawson was conducting surveillance on a fugitive case.

While monitoring 911 radio traffic, Agent Clawson and Deputy Divido heard a dispatch call for an unresponsive two-year-old. Realizing the call for help was coming from a building directly adjacent to where they were parked, the men broke from their surveillance detail and immediately responded.

Agent Clawson checked the child's vitals, confirmed respiratory failure, and administered his state-issued Narcan to counteract the effects of the methadone, while Deputy Divido communicated with local EMS responders who were on their way. Agent Clawson followed up with sternum rubs to increase the effectiveness of the Narcan, and the child began breathing.

The child was transported to a local hospital and then to Children's Hospital in Pittsburgh. In a follow-up investigation by local authorities, medical personnel agreed that the actions taken by Agent Clawson and Deputy Divido undoubtedly saved the child's life.

"I am grateful that a person the caliber of Agent Clawson is a part of the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections and applaud him on this well-deserved award," added Secretary Harry

The Governor's Awards for Excellence recognize Commonwealth employees for exemplary job performance or service that reflects initiative, leadership, innovation and increased efficiency. Agent Clawson is one of 54 state employees from eight agencies honored by Governor Josh Shapiro at today's awards presentation.

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Corrections Media Contact Details

Ryan Tarkowski

Communications Director
Department of Corrections Media

Maria Bivens

Press Secretary
Department of Corrections Media