Special Series

Getting to Know You: Juli McCoy

State: Maryland

Position with WBTB: Board of Directors, Director – Marketing and Public Affairs, Shield Magazine

Family: husband Jason, daughters Audrey (almost 6!) and Amelia (2…and everyone knows it), Izzy (the pup)

Interests or Hobbies: hunting, being outdoors, computer things – making graphics, learning new programs, crafts, reading, working out

Talents: juggling (as in a career, two kids, volunteering and being in school)

Occupation: Assistant Director for a business-funded not-for-profit association that covers a region of three states and five counties focused on economic growth and prosperity.

Greatest Achievement: becoming a mom

Favorite Food: ice cream



Juli wears many hats for Wives Behind the Badge, Inc.  She joined the organization as a volunteer in MD in 2012 and in 2013, she became the Grants Officer.  In October 2013, Juli was asked to serve as a member of the Board of Directors and to step into the role of Director of Marketing and Public Affairs. 

When asked what WBTB means to her, Juli shared that “WBTB was an unrealized necessity in my life.  My husband had been in law enforcement for a little over three years when I stumbled on the organization.  I was elated that the forums were there to confirm some of the questions, fears, doubts and obstacles I had been living with.  I immediately became part of something and no longer felt alone as a police wife.  When I was asked to take on the different roles within the organization at a national level, I was excited to tap into my creative side, but also honored that my professional background and experience was giving me an opportunity to gain management skills.  I have made friendships that have become invaluable to me and had no other opportunity been presented, those friendships alone are worth more than gold.” 

Juli has been in her position as Assistant Director for The Greater Cumberland Committee for nearly thirteen years and is thankful for the opportunities the job has presented her.  She is currently continuing her education (again) in the computer programming field and is always excited to learn new things. 

It is clear that, although very busy with WBTB, work and school, Juli’s main focus and number one priority is always her children.  An issue during her second pregnancy resulted in many lifestyle changes and a new appreciation for each and every day.  Starting the day with a resolution to be positive and a prayer of thanks to God for a new day is what keeps this proud LEOW going.  


Getting to Know You: Coreen Kachermeyer

State: New York

Position with WBTB: Board of Directors, Forums Big Sister

Family: just my husband and me and three furbabies.  Hoping that will change soon!
Interests or Hobbies: I am a huge knitter/spinner – spin my own yarn, figure skating
Talents: see interests or hobbies!
Occupation: Insurance – commercial lines
Greatest Achievement: Went pro with figure skating – skated in an ice show in Georgia
Favorite Food: Doritos! 
Three things I would want if I were stranded on a desert island: Knitting needles & yarn, wine, fire wood
Secret crush: Vin Diesel

Coreen B&W

Getting to Know You: Brandi Ober

State: Delaware

Position with WBTB: National Forums Coordinator

Family: Husband – Dave, Daugher – Marley, Furbabies – Samson, Delilah and K9 Ary

Interests or Hobbies: Gardening, Cooking, Sewing

Talents: OMG!  I don't know – LOL!

Occupation: Delaware State Police Telecommunications Specialist (dispatcher/911 operator)

Greatest Achievement: becoming a mother

Favorite Food: Sushi

Three things I would want if I were stranded on a desert island: husband, daughter, cell phone

Secret Crush: Brian Urlacher

Brandi B&W

Getting To Know You: Brooke Freeman

State – California 

Position with WBTB – Central California Auxiliary Director, Treasurer

Family – Jimmy (Husband), Haidyn (7), Reilly (2), Coco (Dutch Shepherd)

Intersts or Hobbies – Gym, playing with the kids and meeting new people

Talents – Making people laugh without even trying

Occupation – Accountant

Greatest Achievement – Sounds cliché, but my greatest achievement has been bringing my two boys into this world and seeing them grow up

Favorite Food – Bulletproof Coffee and Chicken Fajita Salad…but what I really want to eat is ICE CREAM!!!

Three things I would want if I were stranded on a desert island – Bulletproof Coffee, my husband and my phone with charger

Secret crush – The Rock

Getting to Know You: Jan Miller

State – West Virginia 

Position with WBTB – West Virginia Auxiliary Director, East Coast Regional Auxiliary Assistant

Family – Derek (husband), Lacey (10), Charlie (11 months)

Intersts or Hobbies – reading, shopping traveling

Talents – I can sleep just about anywhere and through anything (Derek would call this my talent)

Occupation – Admin

Greatest Achievement – without a doubt, being a mom

Favorite Food – My mother-in-law's baked steak and gravy.  I could eat it every day.

Three things I would want if I were stranded on a desert island – coffee, my family, a treehouse like Swiss Family Robinson

Secret crush – Before I met my hot hubby, I was totally in love with the guy who played in the Rocketeer (1991 Disney movie)



Getting to Know You: Amanda Pekarek

State – California

Position with WBTB – Vice President, National H.A.L.O.S. Coordinator,
P.O.L.I.C.E. Family Training Facilitator

Family – Husband Brandon, daughters Kennedie and Frankie and son Brandon

Interests or hobbies – Football, outdoor activities with the family, charity work and just recently have begun to enjoy baking/cooking as a stress reliever

Talents – Make up artist

Occupation – Business-owner, make-up artist

My dream vacation would be – Australia or Africa

My super power is – Extremely good at defusing hostile or stressful situations

Something you can do better than your spouse/significant other – Sports games on Wii

My greatest achievement has been – My children and designing my own cosmetic line

Something that no one knows about me is – I am deathly afraid of spiders, but love snakes

My favorite food is – Sushi

Three things I would want if I were stranded on a desert island are – sushi, iPhone, Malibu rum

My secret crush is – Ryan Hurst














Life Behind the Badge: Remember Them

Have seen a lot of praises for our law enforcement men and women lately and that really makes me happy to see.  To give them the credit for getting the people responsible for the bombing and the shooting of a police officer is only part of what they deserve.  They deserve our utmost thanks and respect for the type of job they do.  When I hear naysayers out there in my own neighborhood bashing my husband and his brothers in blue, my heart breaks.  They are our protection against the evil of the world and to make it so that they are the enemy is crossing the line.

The snide remarks and spitting is just part of what they have to deal with on a daily basis.  The other hard part is knowing that there are people that would just rather put their head in the sand and say, “Oh, that was sad about that officer dying.  When is the next game on?”  Things like that may be said as a joke or as an off the cuff comment but when a family of a police officer hears that, it rips us to the core.  They are not just men and women that go out and take care of business.  They are also husbands, wives, sisters and brothers.  They are people who actually care a lot about our country as a whole and want to make it better by taking out the riffraff of the community, one criminal at a time.  Of course, there is no way they can rid society of this infestation but they at least feel it is their duty.

A wise man once said that when men and women go in the academy, they go in wanting to be of service to their fellow man.  They aren’t hardened by life and the nastiness that is out there.  It is when they are an officer that they are faced with this distortion of life and begin to change.  We take good men and women and throw them into the pit of society because that is what they feel is their calling.  (Clark and Tracie Paris of Pain Behind the Badge).

Let us remember that our officers are not robots living a life of no feelings.  They have a heart and a family.  Remember that the next time you feel like making a comment about them.  Their families love them more than words can express and we need to make sure we hold them up like we did right after the bombing suspect was taken into custody.  We should be celebrating them everyday!  The month of May is a great time to do this!  Take the time this month to celebrate our LEO’s.  Let them feel special, even if it is a shake of the hand, a smile and a thank you, or a good cup of coffee.  Their families will thank you.

Kristen Wallitner has been in love and married to her LEO husband for 16 years and they have 2 children, ages 8 and 5.  They do a lot of hiking and outdoor things as a family.  Kristen is also very interested in running, gardening, writing, and cooking, studying her Bible, and spending time with family.

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What is Wives Behind the Badge, Inc?

With 12,000 followers on our Facebook Page, many of you are new here and may not know exactly what WBTB is.  I can give you our canned response: Wives Behind the Badge, Inc. is an all-volunteer national non-profit organization, with 501c(3) status that is dedicated providing support and resources to the law enforcement community. Read More

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Wives Behind the Badge, Inc. is proud to sponsor an amazing class for officers, spouses, and other family members. P.O.L.I.C.E. Families is a class that gives all law enforcement families, not just police officers, tools to use to incorporate family life with the LE lifestyle following an outline based on the acronym of P.O.L.I.C.E. and the motto Protect and Serve. Law enforcement of all kinds present challenges in family relationships that are unique form other occupations. Learning about each other and how to communicate with each other will strengthen the relationships (souses, parents, and friends) and offers a better chance the relationship will survive through those challenges. Read More


Getting to Know You: LaDonna Kay

State – North Carolina

Position(s) with WBTB – Board Member, National Volunteer Coordinator 

Family – I have been married for 10 years, my husband is a Master Deputy with Wake County Sheriffs Office.  We have a beautiful 5 year old little girl named Mackenzie Layne. 

Interests or hobbies – I am a HUGE Pittsburgh Steelers fan….. and I do mean HUGE.  We are highly superstitious, we have to wear the same clothes, sit in the same seats, high five in a certain order… all of it!  We have a Steelers room and we have and WILL keep newbies out because they are bad luck.

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