Mayor Fischer announces eight people to serve on search panel and participate in interviewing candidates for LMPD Chief

October 1, 2020

Mayor Greg Fischer today announced the names of the eight people who will serve on the search panel for a permanent Louisville Metro Police Department Chief, conducting a detailed screening of candidates and recommending top choices for the top spot.

The panel will be focused on the need for police reform and accountability, in keeping with the substantial input received through community surveys and listening sessions held this summer and guidelines provided by the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF), the non-profit Washington, D.C.-based police research organization that is helping lead the search. 

“This panel comprises dedicated leaders from Metro Council, city government and our community – each with a commitment to achieving our goal of reimagining public safety,” Mayor Fischer said. “I am confident they will provide thoughtful insight as we work to advance police reform in our city.”

Metro Council President David James added: “Without question, this selection process will be one of the most important ones the city will make moving forward. I am honored to work with those who have been chosen. Our challenge is to find the right candidates who will listen to the community and are interested in building relationships that reform LMPD and help us retain and locate the right people who want to walk our streets and neighborhoods. Judging by the public safety experience I see on this committee, I’m pleased the Mayor added a community representative to the panel. It is important this process is as transparent as practically possible, and I’m ready to get started.” 

In concert with a Council resolution, the panel includes leadership from Louisville Metro Government (LMG), the Council President, Chair and Vice Chair of the Council’s Public Safety Committee and one private citizen: 

Kendall Boyd, LMG Chief Equity Officer

Boyd, an attorney, has served in city government since 2014, and was appointed to his current role in March. Previously, Boyd served as Assistant Director of Human Resources and then appointed Director of the Louisville Metro Human Relations Commission in 2017.

He has been committed to ensuring fairness and justice for all people, and has participated in the creation and enforcement of policies aimed at making the community more equitable.

Jessica Green, Public Safety Committee Chair, Metro Council

Councilwoman Green began serving as District 1 Councilwoman in 2015; her district includes Lake Dreamland, Cane Run Road, Campground Road, Bells Lane, south to Lower Hunters Trace, in South West Louisville. The district also covers Chickasaw, Russell, California, Park DuValle and Parkland neighborhoods.

In 2019, she was elected Vice Chair of the Council’s Majority Caucus.

During her tenure on the Metro Council, Councilwoman Green has made public safety one of her top priorities. She championed the use of ShotSpotter technology for Louisville Metro Police as a better way of detecting gunfire in the city.

Amy Hess, Chief of Public Safety

As Chief of Public Safety, Hess oversees Emergency Services, Corrections, Fire and LMPD. Before coming to LMG in February 2020, Hess was the highest-ranking woman in the FBI and was serving as Executive Assistant Director of the FBI's Criminal, Cyber, Response and Services Branch in Washington D.C. Previously, she served as the Special Agent in Charge of the Louisville field office, with responsibility for all FBI personnel and operations throughout the commonwealth of Kentucky.

David James, Metro Council President

President James was elected to the Metro Council in November of 2010. He serves the neighborhoods of Algonquin, California, Limerick, Old Louisville, Park Hill, Russell, St. Joseph, Shelby Park, Smoketown-Jackson, Taylor-Berry, University, and the Central Business District.

He has previously held leadership positions as Democratic Caucus Chair in 2013 and 2015.

James has also chaired the Metro Council’s Public Safety Committee. He is a former police officer who has served 30 years in law enforcement including LMPD.

Vincent James, Chief of Community Building, LMG

As Chief of Community Building, James plays a key role in helping with the city’s comprehensive public safety strategy. He supervises departments including the Office for Safe & Healthy Neighborhoods, Public Health & Wellness, Youth Transition Services, the Louisville Zoo, and Parks & Recreation. 

Chief James is also pastor of Elim Baptist Church in Parkland.

James Peden, Public Safety Committee Co-Chair, Metro Council

Councilman Peden was elected to the first Louisville Metro Council in November 2002 after the city and county government merger. He represents the suburban cities of Hollow Creek, Spring Mill and Heritage Creek as well as the neighborhoods of Highview, Okolona and Fern Creek.

His civic involvement includes serving as a major with the Highview Fire Department, where he retired in 2013 after 26 years. He also was a teacher with JCPS for 25 years.

Carmen Moreno-Rivera, Chief of Performance Improvement, LMG

As Chief of the Office for Performance Improvement (OPI), Moreno-Rivera leads strategic and resiliency planning efforts and the performance management program (LouieStat) for Louisville Metro Government. Her staff members facilitate cross-functional teams and train Metro employees in continuous improvement methodologies and project management to support an efficient and effective government.

Sharon VanCleave, Teacher, Rangeland Elementary (JCPS)

VanCleave, a teacher at Rangeland Elementary, is the panel’s community representative. She has served in several leadership roles such as an elected delegate for the Kentucky Education Association Delegate Assembly and National Education Association Representative Assembly. She has been instrumental in implementing trauma informed care at her school. She also has served on JCPS’ Racial and Equity Committee.

 More than 20 people applied by the August 31 deadline for the permanent Chief role. The panel will evaluate the applications, conduct interviews, identify top candidates who appear best suited to lead the LMPD, and make recommendations to the Mayor. The interview process will incorporate input previously collected from the community and LMPD through the aforementioned surveys and listening sessions, as well as questions the community would like to ask the candidates. Anyone interested in suggesting interview questions can email them to [email protected]

The search is being conducted by PERF, acclaimed for guiding cities across the country on issues including reducing police use of force; developing community policing and problem-oriented policing; using technology to deliver police services to the community, and evaluating crime-reduction strategies. For 30 years, PERF has identified the most skilled professionals in the field and assisted cities in recruiting and selecting well-qualified candidates.

Former LMPD Deputy Chief Yvette Gentry has agreed to serve in the interim role until a new permanent Chief is selected. Gentry is replacing LMPD Chief Robert Schroeder in the interim role; she was sworn in today.

Mayor Fischer is expected to name the new permanent Chief by the end of the year.