Each of the three finalists for the Riley County Police Department director position made their pitch to the public Thursday night.
The Riley County Law Board held a three hour public forum at the Manhattan Fire Department Headquarters. Each presented on a central theme of how they intend to make the community and citizens safer, while simultaneously building trust within and throughout the county’s diverse population.
RCPD Administrative Captain Josh Kyle spoke on the importance of rebuilding community partnerships, hiring high-quality personnel, along with a continued focus on face-to-face interactions.
Edwardsville Police Chief Mark Mathies spoke on the “Importance of You,” drawing from the origins of community policing and connecting it to modern day policing and building trust and legitimacy.
Montpelier, Vermont Police Chief Brian Peete spoke about legitimacy as a central theme, noting the police department can’t take care of others if it isn’t taking care of itself. He says he’ll follow a servant based leadership model.
Each was asked questions from community members, including what their leadership styles look like.
Chief Mathies’ response:
Chief Peete’s response:
Captain Kyle’s response:
Each candidate was also asked to speak to the advantages and disadvantages of them being either an internal or external candidate.
Chief Peete, who hails from Vermont, but has roots in the Midwest, having grown up in Chicago, says he brings a lot to the table.
Captain Kyle, the lone internal candidate noted his appreciation for the consolidated nature of RCPD and spoke to both his good qualities and flaws.
Chief Mathies says he’ll draw on experience and sees this more as a homecoming, as Manhattan is his hometown, having been born there and graduated from K-State.
The Riley County Law Board intends to name a director by Dec. 1. The full forum can be viewed below, via RCPD’s Facebook page.