New Appointments Create the Most Diverse Police Command Staff in Department History
Interim Chicago Police Superintendent John J. Escalante today announced a new leadership team at the Police Department through a series of command staff promotions, leadership assignments and an organizational realignment. The moves will build on CPD’s public safety efforts, filling critical vacancies as the department continues to fight gun violence and as the urban centers around the world manage heightened awareness around terrorism. They will also bring diversity at the department’s senior command ranks to a historic level. Now fifty-percent of police chiefs and fifty-percent of deputy chiefs are African American and more women are serving in executive leadership roles.
“These men and women represent the very best of the Chicago Police Department, and I know they will continue to serve our city and our residents with honor,” said Interim Superintendent John Escalante. “Just as I am proud of each of these leaders individually, as the grandson of Mexican immigrants I am proud of the fact that this leadership team draws on the strengths of our entire city. At the same time we are working to recruit a class of officers that better reflects the makeup of our city, we will now have the most diverse leadership team in department history – a fact that will aid the community engagement and partnerships that are critical to our public safety efforts.”
In conjunction with the new command roles, Escalante announced the realignment of the Department’s gang enforcement teams to concentrate police resources and operational flexibility to the city’s twenty-two police districts. The gang enforcement teams will now be organized under the three Police Service Areas and accountable to the Area Deputy Chiefs. This is an enhancement to the existing structure which was organized under one centralized unit and will aid in the department’s effort to better target gang violence on a localized level.
The department is also in the middle of its first recruitment campaign in two years. As part of the effort, CPD is making a specific effort to increase minority participation in the written exam to drive greater diversity among its ranks. In addition to an advertising campaign, police officers are visiting churches, schools, and community events across the city to promote this opportunity and the advantages of joining the Police Department.
Last week the Chicago Police Board, an independent entity from the Police Department, announced the application period for the new police superintendent. The appointee, expected to be named late in late February, will have the full authority to run the police department, including operations and personnel.