The Board of Police and Fire Commissioners (PFC) for the City of Madison, Wisconsin, is seeking a community-focused, collaborative, and innovative professional to lead the Madison Police Department.
The PFC is conducting this search in the context of a national upheaval in policing sparked by the death of George Floyd and the ensuing outcry for racial justice. In addition, the COVID-19 pandemic is imposing unprecedented challenges on police in Madison and nationwide. The PFC recognizes that it has never been more important to find a leader who can create a police culture that prioritizes racial and social justice and who can build and sustain public trust in the Police Department in all of Madison's communities.
Home to 260,000 residents, Madison is the state capital and home of the University of Wisconsin. Madison has a long-standing tradition of transparent and progressive government, a strong economy and high quality of life. Madison ranks #12 on U.S. News' Best Places to Live ranking: "Against a backdrop of high-tech businesses and acclaimed academic institutions, Madison, Wisconsin, exudes the casual, down-to-earth feel you'd expect in the capital of America's Dairyland."
The Madison Police Department is an educated, diverse, community-oriented team of 483 uniformed and 116 professional men and women charged with delivering quality police services that protect the rights of all citizens under the rule of law. Diversity is one of MPD's core values, and the department has been recognized nationally for its diverse workforce. About 21% of MPD commissioned personnel are people of color, and 28% are female. The annual budget is about $84 million.
The Board of Police and Fire Commissioners expects the Department to respond with even more innovation and creativity to contemporary challenges. The Board enthusiastically supports the Department's intentional and focused efforts to bring its principles to new challenges.
This is a unique opportunity for a strong, creative, and compassionate leader to guide the Madison Police Department through this transformational time of diverse and changing community expectations, political protests in the city and on the campus, and controversy regarding the use of physical force. The chief of police is selected under state law by a board of five citizens appointed to staggered 5-year terms by the mayor of the city, providing effective tenure to the chief, who can be removed only for cause, not political whim.
The police chief, who reports to the mayor, must possess:
- An unwavering commitment to transparency and accountability.
- A contemporary leadership style that is deeply rooted in community policing.
- The ability to effectively engage and build trust in the community and with the members of the Madison Police Department.
- An understanding of and commitment to the recommendations contained in the Final Report of the President's Task Force on 21st Century Policing.
- An openness to new information and different perspectives, and a willingness to consider new solutions to persistent public safety problems.
- A demonstrated aptitude for seeking creative, partnership-driven approaches that improve community health and safety.
- A professional and personal track record that demonstrates an ethos of community engagement and collaborative problem-solving.
- A verifiable history of being responsive to the needs of the community.
- Experience and demonstrated success building strong relationships of trust, mutual understanding, and accountability with other city officials, within the community, among rank and file officers, and with local and regional public safety partners.
- Demonstrated commitment to and experience of engaging with diverse communities.
- A relentless commitment to the training and development of staff, particularly for those on the front lines with an emphasis on implicit bias training, de-escalation and the delivery of safe and effective service.
- Impressive experience serving at higher ranks with the demonstrated ability to lead and inspire a multigenerational workforce.
- A history of developing and maximizing the talent in their department and being dedicated to developing future generations of leaders at all ranks.
- Strong interpersonal skills, and a demonstrated commitment to being visible, available, and approachable within the department and in the community.
- An excellent ability and commitment to communicate with both internal and external stakeholders, in person, in group settings, and using social media.
- Exceptional organizational and management skills, including the ability to maintain a strong leadership team, and develop the next generation of leaders.
- Cultural awareness and sensitivity including an understanding of structural racism, and the history of policing in America.
- A commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusiveness throughout the organization.
- Extensive experience in budget management and labor relations.
This position requires:
- A 4-year college degree and three (3) years of responsible and varied managerial experience in local law enforcement; or
- An equivalent combination of education and experience sufficient to successfully perform the essential duties of the job
- Additional specialized leadership education, such as the Senior Management Institute for Police (SMIP) or the FBI National Academy, is desirable.
- The successful candidate must be able to obtain certification as a police officer from the State of Wisconsin.
- Residency within the City of Madison is desired, and residency within 15 miles of the jurisdictional boundary is required, within 60 days of hire.
The Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) is assisting the city in the selection process.
Qualified candidates should apply by September 14, 2020 with cover letter, résumé, and a list of five (5) references in confidence to:
If you have any questions regarding this opportunity, or a recommendation of a colleague, please contact:
Rebecca Neuburger from PERF
Madison is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer. Women and minority candidates are encouraged to apply.