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.

      1027 Kyle central theme

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.

      1027 Mathies central theme

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.

      1027 Peete Leadership style

Each was asked questions from community members, including what their leadership styles look like.

Chief Mathies’ response:

      1027 Mathies Leadership style

Chief Peete’s response:

      1027 Peete Leadership style

Captain Kyle’s response:

      1027 Kyle Leadership style

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.

      1027 Peete perspective

Captain Kyle, the lone internal candidate noted his appreciation for the consolidated nature of RCPD and spoke to both his good qualities and flaws.

      1027 Kyle perspective

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.

      1027 Mathies perspective

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.