Commentary and information about public safety and security, intelligence and counterintelligence, open government and secrecy, and other issues in northern Idaho and eastern Washington.

Location: Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States

Raised in Palouse, WA. Graduated from Washington State University. US Army (Counterintelligence). US Secret Service (Technical Security Division) in Fantasyland-on-the-Potomac and Los Angeles. Now living in north Idaho.

Friday, July 21, 2006

French's Return to Yesteryear

An article in the Friday, July 21, 2006, The Spokesman-Review reports that Spokane City Councilman Al French opposed the selection of Anne E. Kirkpatrick to be Spokane's new police chief. French's reasoning? Chief Kirkpatrick apparently didn't swear a blood oath to remain in Spokane the rest of her life.

Staff writer Jody Lawrence-Turner's article headlined Mayor picks Kirkpatrick for Spokane Police Chief includes these two paragraphs:

But questions still remain. Councilman Al French took issue with the mayor's selection, saying Kirkpatrick appears to be more interested in building her career than in making Spokane her home.

"It's just a matter of time until there's a better job," he said, adding he preferred Linda Pierce of the Seattle Police Department, another finalist, because she indicated she wanted to make Spokane her home.

Effective law enforcement chief executives are in great demand. Often after about three years of demonstrated leadership successes, the exceptional ones start receiving offers from headhunters representing cities desperate for ethical, innovative, skilled leadership. The best chiefs are sought because they've succeeded, not because they've failed. They leave because they're competent and because other cities offer them more opportunities for professional advancement.

Councilman French seems to prefer a chief who will “retire in place.” That’s what Spokane had, not what Spokane needs.


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