If you're a decisive, high-energy visionary with a strong command presence, proven success in dealing with unions and the stamina to thrive in a demanding environment, Palo Alto wants to hear from you.
Those are some of the qualities that City Manager James Keene would like to see in the city's new police chief, according to a recruitment brochure for the position. In addition, the ideal candidate would have at least five years of service at the command level, outstanding interpersonal skills and familiarity with "contemporary policing strategies suitable for a highly educated and engaged community." A full description for the job can be found here.
The city is recruiting a new chief to fill the position left vacant by Dennis Burns, who retired in January. The position has since been filled by interim Chief Ron Watson, a department veteran who made it clear that he is not running for the permanent position.
Recruitment for the permanent position is now in full swing, with the application deadline set for Aug. 27 and preliminary interviews scheduled for September. After the Aug. 27 deadline, the city's consultants would interview the applicants with the most relevant qualifications, who would move on to interviews by panels featuring department heads, community members and professional peers, according to the brochure.
The top candidates would be invited to meet the city manager, with the final interviews set to take place in October.
The position comes with a salary range of $181,126 to $271,689, depending on qualifications and experience.
The brochure describes its ideal candidate as a "visionary contemporary policing professional who is known for promoting high standards of professionalism and performance at all levels of an organization." He or she will also be expected to "possess the stamina to thrive in a demanding environment and embrace the opportunity to serve a progressive community with extraordinarily high expectations," according to the brochure.
Claudia Keith, Palo Alto's chief communication officer, said the city also plans to send out a survey to the community, seeking input on the qualities residents would like to see in the chief. The start date for the new chief is expected to be some time in November, she said.
The Police Department includes 158.4 full-time-equivalent positions and is supported by a $42.3 million budget.