The FOP was founded in 1916 in Pennsylvania and the worldwide membership is in excess of 320,000 members. The Austin Texas Lodge of the Fraternal Order of Police is a subordinate lodge to the Texas Fraternal Order of Police which is a subordinate lodge to the Grand Lodge Fraternal of Police. We are organized to protect the interests of the men and women who have taken an oath to defend the citizens of the communities in which the officers serve.
The Fraternal Order of Police was started by two Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania police officers, Delbert Nagle and Martin Toole in 1915. The Fraternal Order of Police has grown from its original 23 officers in Pittsburgh, to over 320,000 members among the 50 states. The FOP has 40 state lodges and more than 2,000 local lodges. The FOP is by far the largest police organization in the United States. We also have affiliate lodges in Canada, Ireland, and Germany.
One must be a full-time or a retired law enforcement officer to become a member of the Fraternal Order of Police. The local board of directors includes a president, vice-president, secretary, treasurer, conductor, guard and trustees. Each local lodge is represented on the state board of directors by a state trustee chosen by the local lodge. The state and national boards are comprised and structured in a similar manner and state and national conferences occur on a biennial basis.
A local lodge sets it own dues structure based on whatever benefits the lodge wants to provide it members. The local lodge is required to pay a yearly per-capita tax per member per year to the Texas State Lodge, and a national per capita tax per member per year to the Grand Lodge.
Officers of the Grand Lodge, the Texas State Lodge, and most local lodges serve two year terms. The reason the FOP can provide so many services for it members is because we have only three officers on the national level that are salaried President, Secretary, and Treasurer. As you can imagine these are full time jobs and require full-time compensation.
The Fraternal Order of Police Grand Lodge meets every two years. These conferences are attended by approximately 3,000 voting delegates from around the United States. Each local lodge is encouraged, but not required to send delegates proportionate with is membership. The state lodge has its meeting, which can be attended by all local lodges, in the year following the national conference. It is at this meeting that state officers are elected, the legislative agenda is prepared, and other business is decided.
The key to the FOP' s success its flexibility and its structure as a democratically governed organization. Every member has an equal voice and the opportunity to determine the future of the Fraternal Order of Police.
Austin Lodge 49 Mission Statement
To support and defend the Constitution of the United States, and the State of Texas, to inculcate loyalty and allegiance to the United States of America; to promote and foster the impartial enforcement of law and order, to improve the individual proficiency of our members in the performance of their duties, to encourage social, charitable, educational activities among all law enforcement officers, to cultivate a spirit of fraternalism and mutual helpfulness among our membership and the people we serve; to increase the efficiency of the police profession and thus more firmly establish the confidence of the public in the service that is dedicated to the protection of life and property.
Our motto is:
"Jus Fidus Libertatum"
which translates to:
"Law is the Safeguard of Freedom"