of the Police Commission's Parker Center Address on 9/19/02
BOARD OF POLICE COMMISSIONERS
..... Rick J. Caruso - President
..... David Cunningham, III - Vice
..... Herbert F. Boeckmann, II
..... Rose Ochi
..... Silvia Saucedo
The Honorable James K. Hahn
Mayor of the City of Los Angeles
200 North Spring Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Dear Mr. Mayor:
After turning over the facts, and having met and carefully considered
those highly qualified applicants who appeared before us, we the
members of the Los Angeles Board of Police Commissioners have selected
three candidates to recommend to you. Our task has required our
utmost attention and diligence the past several months, because
we know the importance of our decision. Los Angeles is a City at
the crossroads, at a historic turning point. A healthy Los Angeles
Police Department is critical to a healthy Los Angeles. Guided by
enlightened, informed leadership, we can move forward to fulfill
the promise we made to this City. The Commission is fully committed
to support our new Chief's efforts to fully transform our Department.
We, all of us, are deeply aware of this great responsibility. The
people of Los Angeles are relying on our best judgment and we firmly
believe we have accomplished that task with their interest as our
guide. This Commission is united in its resolve to make our City
the safest large city in the United States. The people of Los Angeles
deserve no less - together we will succeed.
Of the thirteen candidates we interviewed, all are highly qualified,
first rate officers and leaders. Consequently, narrowing the field
was difficult, to say the least. To all those fine officers who
we were privileged to meet, we express our gratitude. In the end
we were given the opportunity of choosing the best of the best.
Many of these candidates have dedicated their careers to the Los
Angeles Police Department. That dedication cannot be praised enough.
To these men and women, we encourage them to continue their fine
work at the Los Angeles Police Department so that the City can continue
to benefit from their years of experience and knowledge.
At this historic moment, Los Angeles needs a Chief who is, more
than anything, devoted to making this City safe from crime and the
fear of crime. The Chief must improve morale and increase retention
and recruitment and in our great City, enriched by so many diverse
cultures and voices. The new Chief must be sensitive to the needs
of all Angelenos, and must embrace community policing not as a "buzz
word", but as a way of conducting police business every day. Also,
the Chief must embrace the fact that this police department is lead
by the Police Commission.
Significantly contributing to our efforts was the outstanding contribution
provided by the Personnel Department, members of the community and
the Blue Ribbon Committee. The Commission gauged the candidates
using criteria developed by the public and the Blue Ribbon Committee.
We have heard the residents of Los Angeles and the Blue Ribbon Committee.
Our Chief must be a strong leader; someone who inspires troops as
well as earns the respect and trust of our community. Our Chief
must have a strategic plan, the ability to implement that plan and
be dedicated to the improvement of the Department. Our Chief must
be devoted to this Department, to its men and women. Our Chief must,
of course, be an astute manager. This Department is large and very
complex and our Chief needs to understand the details, while always
keeping the ultimate goal in mind. The City simply demands these
Moreover, we must have a Chief who is committed to reform. The Department
has recently made significant advancements and improvements and
we will not lose our momentum now. Our historic juncture rests in
our Chief's ability to lead the Department out of its past, into
a future marked by bold and new thinking, while maintaining the
proud tradition that has always been the Los Angeles Police Department.
Great cities will always face challenges. However, the way we meet
those challenges is what counts, what matters. In the past few months,
we've felt a sense of renewed purpose, of challenges met, of promises
kept, of engagement with the future, a commitment to change and
transform as well as connecting with the community we serve.
These three finalists we are asking you to consider are tried and
true veterans - each is unique, all are proven leaders, each willing
to listen and to lead. They understand the challenges ahead of us
and have been tested and recognized for their distinguished record
in police work. Each has shown an ability to question rather than
accept, to hope rather than despair, and to venture rather than
Great challenges await us. With optimism, faith, and confidence,
we expect nothing less than success. Our message is clear; this
Department is stronger today, and on its way back. The men and women
of this Department are eager to serve the public and be lead by
a proven Chief.
Because of the high quality of all the applicants, we are not listing
the top candidates in order of preference because all three finalists
have unique strengths which deserve the top rating. On behalf of
the people of Los Angeles and the men and women of the Los Angeles
Police Department, we respectfully submit the following candidates,
in alphabetical order, for your consideration as the next Chief
of Police. All of us look forward to a new beginning in Los Angeles.
Very truly yours,
LOS ANGELES BOARD OF POLICE COMMISSIONERS
Rick J. Caruso, President
David S. Cunningham, III, Vice President
Bert Boeckmann, II