“The police chief should be a visible and accessible leader who thoughtfully strives to improve the effectiveness of police services. The leadership ability of the chief is the single most important ingredient in a good police agency… Improvements can be made only if the person at the top is willing to challenge the status quo, take risks, be innovative, and build a coalition of support for change. Improvements are not automatic with a committed police chief, but they are impossible with one.”
How to Rate Your Local Police, was a big hit through the 80s and 90s. It was the book that civic and governmental leaders went to when they wanted to know more about police work and what makes for a high quality police department and its leader.
This was the time when Gary Hayes headed up a new and bold gathering of innovative and forward-looking police chiefs called the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF). This was also the time when change was in the air, Community-Oriented Policing was the answer to mistrust of police, the Quality Leadership was about to be developed, Herman Goldstein’s Problem-Oriented Policing was underway, and long-absent uniformed women and racial minorities started police duties. I was one of those early members of PERF when I was chief in Madison, Gary and I decided that I would write this needed book and PERF would publish it. When the book came out, Gary and I we asked to come to New York and talk about the book on national television. It was a radical idea: what citizens should expect from their police
Over the years, many police chiefs contacted me and told me how important this book was to their careers; specifically, they gave copies of the book to their mayors, city managers, council members, and other community leaders and that helped them in their job because they had a common understanding of what police should be doing and what constitutes high-quality leadership in a chief officer.
Now, after years of its absence from the marketplace, I have revised and updated my original manuscript.
Now, more than ever, community leaders, elected officials, interested citizens, and forward-thinking police need to know the vital information that is in this book. I have added a check-list and a number of short informative items in a new appendix about Community-Oriented Policing, Principles of Quality Leadership, and qualities of police in a democracy.
A police department and leadership that is in line with the recommendations of this book will be able to restore trust and community support – the two essentials of properly and effectively policing our nation.
The book can be purchased HERE or at Amazon.com for $10.00.