CLEVELAND, Tenn. -- Cleveland has received 36 applications in response to its search for a new police chief.
"We hope to narrow the applicants down to three to five candidates by Friday," said City Manager Janice Casteel on Wednesday.
An interview panel consisting of Casteel, law enforcement consultant Larry Wallace, Lee University President Paul Conn and Robert Bradney, board chairman of the Cleveland/Bradley Chamber of Commerce, will review the applications, with the assistance of Jeff Davis, the city's human resources director, she said.
While most of the applicants reside in Tennessee, a quarter of the applicants originate from Missouri, Texas, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, North Carolina and Maryland. One applicant works with the United Nations in Somalia.
Four of the applicants have experience with the Cleveland Police Department, the Bradley County Sheriff's Office or both agencies, while another six applicants hold law enforcement positions in various departments within the Chattanooga area.
In his application letter, Capt. Mark Gibson, an 18-year Cleveland Police Department veteran who has been serving as interim chief since March, said he has "led the department during some of the most difficult times in its history."
Gibson was placed in charge of the department after Dennis Maddux, who only served as chief for one day, was demoted in March following a highly publicized sex scandal involving another officer's wife. Maddux resigned from the department in May in the wake of an internal investigation of the matter.facebook
Gibson also served as acting chief for several months in 2014 while then-Chief David Bishop was on medical leave.
Other Bradley County applicants include Jon K. Collins, a Cleveland police officer who served with the sheriff's office for 22 years; Bill T. Dyer, the director of safety and security for Jones Management who served with the sheriff's office for nearly 30 years; and Robert Renagar, a 26-year veteran of the city police department who retired in 2004.
Chattanooga law enforcement applicants include East Ridge Police Chief J.R. Reed, Red Bank Police Chief Timothy Christol, Chattanooga Housing Authority Police Chief Felix Vess, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Police Chief Craig Hamilton, Chattanooga State Community College Police Chief Stephanie D. Hill and Chattanooga Police Capt. Nathan A. Vaughn, who is commander of organized and violent crimes investigations.
Experience and application of the concept of community policing was cited as a common strength by a number of applicants, including those from Chattanooga.
In her application letter, Hill stated that college campus policing is "the best definition" of community policing, citing the "culturally and socio-economically diverse" school population.
"I firmly believe in creating positive encounters between police officers and the community with the goal of building meaningful and trusting relationships," said Vaughn in his submission.
In a recent meeting with the Cleveland City Council, Wallace said he expects the new police chief will be in place by Oct. 1.
Paul Leach is based in Cleveland. Email him at email@example.com.
Ronald J. Oliver
Upper Marlboro, Md.
Various commander positions for Office of the Sheriff, Prince George’s County, 1990 - 2013
Chief Deputy for Monroe County Sheriff’s Office, 2006 - 2014
Robert M. Baer
Current Deputy Chief for Gladstone Department of Public Safety, Mo.
Served as division commander from 2007 - 2015
Craig B. Moates
Current Chief of Police, McKenzie Police Department
Served as police chief for Kotzebue Police Department, Alaska from 2010 to 2012
D. Dennis Brown
Current management and training consultant with Arrive Management Group
Served as police chief for Newberry, S.C., Windsor, Vt., and Wilton, Maine
Current area sales manager for Bluegrass Uniforms and Equipment Co.
Retired as captain from Florence Police Department, serving from 1988 to 2008
Stephen L. Abbington
St. Charles, Mo.
Served in various St. Louis-area law enforcement positions between 1994 and 2011; served as police chief for Wellston, Mo. between 2001 and 2006.
Mt. Carmel, Tenn.
Criminal justice instructor for Johnson City Schools
Served with Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office from 1997 to 2013, attaining rank of captain in 2007.
Current captain/civil field and levy commander for Shelby County Sheriff’s Office.
Has served with department since 1991.
East Ridge, Tenn.
Chief of East Ridge Police Department
Has served with the department since 1988
Chris W. Mathes
Johnson City, Tenn.
Director of Public Safety and Security for Universal Protection Services
Served as sheriff for Carter County from 2006 to 2014
Frank J. Tennant
Chief of Millington Police Department
Served as police chief or Hermann, Mo. from 2004 to 2014
Michael D. Bledsoe
Administrative Captain of Monroe County Sheriff’s Office
Served as police chief for Vonore, Tenn. from 2003 to 2007
Stephanie D. Hill
Chattanooga State Community College Police Chief
Has served 19 years in law enforcement and private security
Interim Chief for Cleveland Police Department
Has served with department since 1997
Jon K. Collins
Patrol officers for Cleveland Police Department
Served with Bradley County Sheriff’s Office from 1992 to 2014, attaining rank of major in 2011.
Tennessee Highway Patrol Captain
Has served with THP since 1981, attaining rank of captain in 2013
James C. Paris
Served as chief of Mason Police Department from 2007 to 2015
Served as Shelby County Sheriff’s Office detective from 1993 to 2004
Criminal investigator for Roane State Police Department
Served 20 years with Rockwood Police Department
Robert C. Renegar
Retired from Cleveland Police Department in 2004
Served department for 26 years
Part-time instructor for Cleveland State Police Academy from 2004 to 2011
United Nations Child Protection Specialist/Senior Justice Sector Reform
Served with police service in Queensland, Australia, from 2001 to 2012
Anthony W. Heavner
Captain with Madison County Sheriff’s Office
Has served with department since 1989
Bill T. Dyer
Director of Safety and Security for Jones Management - Check Into Cash - U.S. Money Shops
Served with Bradley County Sheriff’s Office from 1985 to 2014; held rank of chief deputy between 2006 and 2010
Raymond W. Sides
Commanding sergeant for homicide division of Shelby County Sheriff’s Office
Has served department for 25 years
Justin D. Powers
President/owner of JDPowers Investigative Services
Chief of Grand Junction Police Department from 2010 to 2013
James W. Shavers
Assistant Chief of Lubbock Police Department
Has served the department for 27 years
Clifford E. “Max” Meyer
Chief of Brooklet Police Department
Has served in law enforcement since 1979
Felix M. Vess
Chattanooga Housing Authority Police Chief
Has served with department since 2002
Craig S. Hamilton
University of Tennessee of Chattanooga Police Chief
Served with Bradley County Sheriff’s Office from 1990 to 2005
Arthur S. King
Winter Park, Fla.
Former deputy chief of Winter Park Police Department
Served with department from 1982 to 2015
White Bluff, Tenn.
White Bluff Police Department Officer
Served with Dickson County Sheriff’s Office from 1990 to 2014
Timothy A. Christol
Red Bank Police Chief
Served with Knox County Sheriff’s Office from 1979 to 2009
Wayne H. Jackson
Vice President of security and investigations for ERMC
Served with the Federal Bureau of Investigations from 1983 to 2010
Douglas C. Reese
Royal Palm Beach, Fla.
Captain with Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office
Has served the department since 1984
Thomas R. Parker
Captain with Williamson County Sheriff’s Office
Has served the department since 1978
Nathan A. Vaughn
Captain with Chattanooga Police Department
Has served the department since 1990