City seeks input for desired characteristics of the next police chief

Published on October 04, 2021

Grand Rapids Police Chief badge and patch on uniform

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – The City of Grand Rapids is seeking community’s input regarding its search for the City’s next chief of police. Public Sector Search & Consulting, Inc. will host four-virtual community forums in October to provide residents with opportunities to share their thoughts on the personal characteristics and professional experience that are most important for the leader of the Grand Rapids Police Department. Public input gathered from the forums will be condensed into a profile used in the recruiting process.

The community forums are scheduled as follows:

  • October 13 (Wednesday) from 6 to 7:30 p.m.
  • October 16 (Saturday) from 10 to 11:30 a.m.
  • October 16 (Saturday) from 3 to 4:30 p.m.
  • October 19 (Tuesday) from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

The link to the community forums can be found at: https://www.grandrapidsmi.gov/Our-City/Events-Activities/Virtual-Community-Forum-Desired-Characteristics-of-Police-Chief. Those that participate will have the opportunity to answer questions posed by the moderator and provide their thoughts of what qualities they believe the next chief must possess.

“It is important we have the right leader to ensure the safety and trust of our community,” City Manager Mark Washington said. “That is why we’re encouraging our residents and other community members to participate in these engagement sessions and have their voices heard. Input from our neighborhoods and the community is critical to helping us select the right person.

“We are looking to recruit a candidate who is focused on building trust, preventing crime, improving response, providing transparency, valuing diversity, and is an outstanding leader and great communicator. We also want someone who is collaborative and is committed to the goals surrounding community and neighborhood policing outlined in the department’s strategic plan. I look forward to hearing from the community on other qualities we need in our next police chief,” Washington said.

Following the community engagement process, Public Sector Search & Consulting will post the position, and gather and screen applications. The candidates will be presented to the City and interviewed by several panels. The panelists will provide critical feedback to the City Manager, who will make the appointment – expected early next year.

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