Amy Sulahian proclaims honor of law enforcement profession
By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski
Pasadena attorney Amy Sulahian says law enforcement officers are undervalued — especially because they’re an integral and indispensable part of society.
To support them, in 2017 Sulahian co-founded The LEO (Law Enforcement Officer) Project, a nonprofit organization that strives to reaffirm the honor and strengthen the resolve of the law enforcement professional.
“I have a lot of close friends who are in law enforcement,” Sulahian says. “It’s something I’m passionate about supporting and felt compelled to bring to light and support.
“There are many entities that support fallen soldiers, which is something I am also passionate about.”
Sulahian’s brother served in the Army’s Special Forces as a Green Beret, so it hits close to home. Like the military, law enforcement officers risk and often sacrifice their lives with the sworn duty of maintaining a civil society.
She has raised thousands of dollars for the cause, but the pandemic has severely hampered fundraising efforts. Regardless, her kindness extends beyond the California border.
“There are law enforcement officers who need our help everywhere,” she says. “While there are other organizations that also assist fallen or injured officers and their families, we do not want to just provide a check, but rather truly try to understand and provide specific needs to them and help facilitate to fulfill those needs.
“We search for resources and solutions that will assist the officers and their families on the road to physical, emotional and financial recovery.”
A notable donation happened on November 9 and November 10, 2018, when she traveled to ISM Raceway (now Phoenix Raceway) in Avondale, Arizona, to benefit fallen Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) Trooper Tyler Edenhofer.
Edenhofer was shot and killed in the line of duty on July 25, 2018, during an altercation with a suspect who was throwing debris at passing vehicles on the I-10. The suspect killed Edenhofer with his own service weapon.
A Navy veteran, Edenhofer was finishing his last night of field training, as he only graduated from the State Trooper Academy on May 4, 2018. He is the youngest fallen trooper in DPS history.
“We had a NASCAR truck wrapped with his badge number and his name,” she says. “It raced the night of the 9th and 10th. The LEO Project sold commemorative T-shirts with his name, badge and the truck image on them to raise money for his mother, Debbie Edenhofer. It was a great success.”
The LEO Project planned a March 2020 fundraiser in Beverly Hills, but that was postponed due to the pandemic.
“It’s been difficult to do our traditional fundraising events,” Sulahian says. “Hopefully soon we’ll be starting back. Unfortunately, there is no shortage of fallen and injured law enforcement officers across our nation. I’m eager to continue our efforts.”
So many folks, she says, do not understand or appreciate law enforcement officers’ jobs.
“We go around in our day-to-day lives, ignorant to so much that is going on around us and the potential harm that is being precluded because of these great men and women in uniform,” Sulahian says.
“They come to our aid. We forget they are our rescuers when there’s nobody else there. They are the ones who are there. They support, encourage and protect us. They tell us, ‘It’s going to be OK.’ That is not a little thing when you’re in the midst of a traumatic experience.”
As an example, Sulahian recalls a “terrible car crash” involving her mother and son.
“I knew exactly what it was like to feel helpless and needing somebody to be there to help,” she says. “When I arrived on scene, it was a horrific sight. It was the officer on scene that kept me calm and gave me reassurance they were going to be ok. Thanks to all the first responders, my mother and son are still with us.”
Sulahian, who owns the successful firm Sulahian Law, says it is not a problem balancing the two endeavors.
“When you have a love and passion for something, you don’t look at it as work or something that takes of your time. It’s a natural part of your daily existence.”
The LEO Project