City Manager Rees Outlines Plans for Police Chief Search; Police Chief to be Hired by Beginning of New Year

By Carol McCracken (Post # 880)

City Manager Mark Rees discussed his plans for a police chief search before the Public Safety Committee this afternoon at city hall. In a surprise move, Police Chief James Craig left the position he’d held for about two years earlier this summer when he left to head the Cincinnati Police Department. In the interim, assistant to the chief, Michael Sauschuck has been Acting Police Chief.

The process requires that qualified candidates su bmit applications to the city later this month and following a review of submission, selected candidates will be invited to be interviewed by city staff and community members as well as submit to an Assessment Center. The Center will evaluate candidates through a series of exercises including an in-basket exercise, which is a complex problem-analysis and decision-making exercise involving at least ten items, a tactical exercise, simulation exercise and program plannaing. These exercises will help to inform the City Manager as he makes his final determination for Police Chief.

By September 26, the city will begin advertising the position with both local and national aoutlets including several national and regional policing organizations. Applications for the position are due at the close of business Friday, October 28, 2011.

While the schedule is tentative and subject to change, the goal is to have the City Manager name a new Police Chief at the beginning of the New Year.

“As with alla high profile positions responsible for core city operations, it is important that we have a competitive process that imbues confidence and trust from the public and the city’s workforce and I am confident that this search process will lead the city to a well qualified, experienced Police Chief,” said City Manager Rees. “It is paramount that we identify a candidate that can hit the ground running and keep current projects moving forward,” continued Rees. “….we need a chief that can keep pace with a dynamic and professional police department.”

For more detailed information regarding the city’s police chief search, visit the city’s website at www.portlandmaine.gov.