Mayor urges residents to participate in survey to share their priorities for new LMPD Chief

June 10, 2020

Mayor Greg Fischer today encouraged Louisville residents to participate in a survey to share their priorities for Louisville’s next permanent chief of police. The Mayor relieved former Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) Chief Steve Conrad of his duties on June 1, and named Robert Schroeder as LMPD’s acting chief, pending the hiring of a permanent chief.

Mayor Fischer announced on June 3 that the city had hired the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF), a non-profit Washington, D.C.-based police research organization to lead the search, noting that PERF has identified best practices for cities across the country on fundamental issues such as 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.

“One of the main directives that we gave to PERF is that the community MUST be involved in the search for a new chief,” the Mayor said today during a media briefing at Central Park. “So today, we’re announcing the launch of a community survey to get that started. We want to hear your priorities for our next permanent chief of police.”

Specifically, he said, residents are asked to share:

  • The three most important qualities or skills you would like to see in the next police chief;
  • Your suggestions for improving police services; and
  • What a new chief must accomplish immediately, and over the next 2-3 years.

At the same time, PERF will survey LMPD employees by asking similar questions. The input of both the public and the department are important, the Mayor said, noting, “The new Chief must be able to communicate and have trust with both the community and our police department.”

The community survey will be up for at least three weeks and can be accessed at Metro is working to set up a phone line for those without access to a computer.

The LMPD survey will be emailed from Chief Schroeder.

“I encourage everyone to participate – especially those who have been protesting and those supporting them,” the Mayor said.

In addition to the survey, PERF will hold listening sessions over the next month, with various focus groups being held across the community. After that, PERF will review and analyze all the information residents provide to help pinpoint the qualities and characteristics needed for the city’s next police chief. They will use that information to conduct a national search and create a list of qualified candidates.

Next steps include convening a small group of community and Louisville Metro representatives to review the list, narrow it, conduct interviews, and send the Mayor their final recommendations. The entire process is expected to take 4 to 6 months, the Mayor said, adding, “We want you to be engaged in the process, because it’s going to take all of us to get this right.”

The Mayor stressed that Metro Council will be involved in the process, encouraging people to take the survey, helping identify focus groups participants and recommending members of the group convened to do interviews.

Council President David James, who attended today’s briefing, said the Council is ready to be involved. “Starting the search process for a new LMPD Chief is a very important step in the right direction for our city,” he said. “I look forward to the community and Metro Council playing an active role in selecting the most important appointment the Mayor makes in his administration.”


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