Cincinnatians Can Weigh in on Four Police Chief Candidates During Community Forums

Here's how to ask the four finalists some questions and actually get answers.

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click to enlarge Cincinnati is hosting community forums for residents to comment on four police chief finalists. - Nick Swartsell
Nick Swartsell
Cincinnati is hosting community forums for residents to comment on four police chief finalists.

Cincinnati community members will have a chance to meet face-to-face with the finalists for the next chief of the Cincinnati Police Department.

The first of two community forums for the public to interact with the four finalists kicks off 6:30-8 p.m. Nov. 29 at Pleasant Ridge Recreation Center Gym, 5915 Ridge Ave. The second forum will be 6:30-8 p.m. Nov. 30 at Westwood Town Hall Auditorium, 3017 Harrison Ave.

The Cincinnati Police Department's top job is hired by the city manager, Sheryl Long, but community members will be allowed to write down questions for the candidates. A panel moderator will ask each finalist to answer the submitted questions, each getting two minutes to answer.

Those unable to attend in person will be able to tune in through a Facebook livestream and on CitiCable. City staff will be monitoring the Facebook Live comments for questions to give to the moderator. There is also an online forum where citizens can send feedback on the final candidates.

The city conducted a national and local search for the permanent leader. Eliot Isaac, the department’s former longtime chief, retired on March 1.

Long announced the four finalists on Nov. 18: Larry Boone, Todd Chamberlain, Lisa Davis and current interim police chief Teresa Theetge.

Prior to taking on the interim chief role, Theetge was the executive assistant chief under Isaac and has been with the CPD for more than 31 years. She’s the first woman to lead the department. Lisa Davis is the assistant police chief, serving the CPD since 1992. Boone is from Norfolk, Virginia, where he was the police chief for the Norfolk Police Department until he retired in April. Chamberlain has experience as the chief of police for the Los Angeles School Police Department and as a commander for the Los Angeles Police Department.

“I have complete faith the best person to fill the role of Cincinnati Police Chief is within this group of established, respected law enforcement members. These finalists exemplify the qualities needed to lead our nationally recognized, innovative police department,” Long said in the news release. “Our City faces real challenges with police recruitment and retention. We need strong leadership and a chief with a deep understanding of the collaborative agreement and community problem-oriented policing.”

The city’s website lists Dec. 5 - Jan. 17 as the “negotiation and start date” for the new police chief.

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