An Open Letter to the Members of the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF):
Your organization, the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF), will be hosting a meeting next week (September 16-17) in Chicago titled, “Defining Moments for Police Chiefs.”
They have said it is “to discuss how police chiefs handle critical incidents and their defining moments… [Including] a discussion of some of the issues raised by the recent events in Ferguson, Mo.”
Now, more than ever, this is needed.
But needed only if you will take action.
Many of you may know that I was one of the early members of PERF when it formed in the 1970s. It was the time when Gary Hayes was its director. In those early years, our organization was the think tank of American policing -- committed to continuous improvement.
I was also active in choosing your present executive director, Chuck Wexler, when Gary when suddenly died. It was much too early for a man of his great vision and intellect. But Gary's spirit, still walks the halls of PERF urging us to better.
The year I retired, your organization presented me with your highest honor, the annual Leadership Award and highlighted my work in in Madison, Wisc. It was an award I still cherish because it came from my colleagues.
While I was not invited to the meeting next week, permit me to be so bold as to send this "open letter" to those of you who will be there. Given these times and these events, I must speak.
First of all, I hope you occasionally following my blog and have read some of my posts on police improvement. Maybe you also have read my book, "Arrested Development" and the seven steps necessary to improve our nation's police. I have not be dormant since my police retirement.
But last week's posts, for example, were about “elephants” in the chief's office. You know, the issues known to be present and exist, but things rather not acknowledged or discussed.
I wrote about four major and immediate problems or issues (elephants) that are currently confronting our nation’s police leadership.
You see, it’s now no longer possible to ignore these issues. Ferguson changed all that.
These matters must be addressed and responded to with a bold and creative action plan from you, our nation's police leaders.
And you must publicly commit yourselves to improve these four areas of the policing function.
I wish I could be there with you. I actually have more things I would like to share with you as a result of my 25 years as a chief of police and another two decades observing police operations and leadership -- the formal education of police, clinical relationships with academia, hiring and training police, leading them, being a total, community-oriented police department, and sustaining excellence beyond today.
Nevertheless, I wish you blessings.
And I urge you to stand up and be bold.
It's what leaders do.
Arrested Development: A Veteran Police Chief Sounds Off About Protest, Racism, Corruption and the Seven Steps Necessary to Improve Our Nation’s Police
“Chief, I just finished reading your book, Arrested Development today. What a great and timely read
for me as I seriously consider perhaps trying to take my career to another level and a new challenge as a police chief. My eyes actually welled up while reading
your epilogue. That has never happened to me as a result of reading a book. I believe your book will help me make a profound and positive difference in my leadership heretofore in my career as a police chief. Thank you for writing this book. I wish I had read it years ago.”
Order Arrested Development HERE.
READ REVIEWS ON AMAZON.COM.
THE NEW QUALITY LEADERSHIP WORKBOOK FOR POLICE:
Leadership and Improvement Methods.
By Chief David C. Couper and
Captain Sabine Lobitz
The New Quality Leadership Workbook will help you learn how to:
We now have updated the ideas, concepts, and methods described in the Workbook for today’s police leader. The ideas and methods in the Workbook have helped improve police departments and their leaders throughout our country and abroad.
ORDER THE WORKBOOK HERE.
Welcome to my site!
Here’s a quick overview of what you will find.
Here’s a quick overview of what you will find.
- EXCERPTS FROM "ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT" From my new book, “Arrested Development: A Veteran Police Chief Sounds Off About Protest, Racism, Corruption and the Seven Steps Necessary to Improve Our Nation’s Police,” (April, 2012).
- INTERVIEWS/REVIEWS OF THE BOOK Some interviews and reviews I had this past year promoting the book – TV, radio and in print.
- LEADERSHIP AND CHANGE Some notes on leadership and organizational change – primarily about police, but applicable to all workplaces.
- THE 12 QUALITIES OF POLICING “On This We Stand – the 12 Qualities of Police in a Free and Democratic Society. An invitation to police leaders to “stand up and sign up.”
- IMPROVING POLICE BLOG The blog “Improving Police” (which takes on current issues preventing (arresting) the improvement of our nation’s police.
- AND REGARDING THE OTHER PARTS OF MY LIFE...
- FIGHTING CANCER BLOG A blog on my wife’s cancer (“My Sabine”) in which I have blogged since 2008 following my wife, Sabine’s blood cancer diagnosis (multiple myeloma) and kidney failure.
- GODSPIRIT BLOG A spirituality blog, “GodSpirit” in which I regularly post about matters of faith and spirituality – hopefully in a very down to earth way. It also describes my thoughts, feelings, and struggles -- especially after one of my children committed suicide.
- CHURCH WEBSITE A link to the website of the small Episcopal church I serve east of Madison in the town of North Lake in Waukesha County, our monthly newsletter including a reflection of mine called, "The Pastor's Pen.".
- PHOTOS A photo archive I am in the process of building – sort of a life line of photos.
- MY POETRY A copy of my book “Restoration Point” which has a number of poems I have written over the past half-century.
- WHY FAITH? A "question and answer" interview with me regarding my Christian faith.