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Neighborhood Resident Selected to Interview Police Candidates

Second Neighborhood Resident Selected to Help Interview Police Chief Candidates

Post Date:10/15/2007

Contact: Cindy Uken
Public Information Coordinator
City of Palm Springs
760-323-8250

October 15, 2007

For the second time in as many weeks, City Manager David H. Ready has selected a representative of one of Palm Springs’ neighborhoods to help hire the City’s next Chief of Police. Ready’s move is aimed at punctuating the importance of the City Council’s policy on neighborhood involvement in Palm Springs.

Dorothy Bowens, a resident of Palm Springs since 1955, was selected in large part because of her involvement on the board of the Desert Highland Gateway Estates Community Action Association. Bowens is also President of the Desert Highland Advisory Committee.

“I’m very excited and honored as a matter of fact to be able to be a part of this,” Bowens said. “One of the things that’s important to me is that I will be able to bring back information to our neighborhood community and ask the candidates what they would like to see and what they can do for our area – and for the City overall.”

Bowens also is Vice Chair of the Human Rights Commission, which was created to promote and protect the diversity of the community and to improve human relations through education and community awareness. She also serves as Chair of the Hate Crimes Task Force, a subcommittee of the Human Rights Commission. Additionally, Bowens sits on The Palm Springs Citizen’s Police Advisory Board, which acts as a liaison between the community and the Police Department.

“I want a Chief who is going to come in and be very active in our community -- not just in one part of our City, but our entire City,” Bowens said. “Some of the things that we’ve already started with our current Chief, such as the Hate Crimes Task force, I’d like to see continued. I would like to see the Palm Springs Police Advisory Board continued. I just want the next Chief to be involved. The Chief we have now always has his door open to us if we have a problem. We have a police officer who comes to the community meetings every month and gives us a report on what’s going on in our area. I would like to see that continued as well.” Joining Ready and Bowens on the interview panel will be a City Council subcommittee of Councilmembers Chris Mills and Ginny Foat, Police Chief Gary Jeandron, Rob Parkins, former Palm Springs City Manager and current General Manager of the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway, Nick Chicola, vice president of the Deepwell Estates Neighborhood Organization, and a member of the Police Advisory Board.

Sixty-two people have applied to become the next Chief of Police in Palm Springs; the field has been narrowed to eight finalists, according to Ready. Of the eight, three are currently Police Chiefs, three are Assistant or Deputy Chiefs, one is a Commander and one is a Captain. Interviews with finalists are scheduled to begin in late October. Ready said he expects to announce the new Chief in November, and the successful candidate will officially take
office Jan. 1.

The City retained an executive search firm, Avery Associates, to conduct the Chief of Police recruitment to replace Chief Gary Jeandron who is retiring in December. The new Police Chief will be the City’s 12th since 1940 when the City took over the Police Protection District.

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