City Manager Robert Layton on Thursday announced three finalists to fill the Wichita Police Department (WPD) Chief of Police position, which has been open since September 2014.
The finalists were named after an extensive community engagement process following an organizational assessment conducted by Wichita State University’s Hugo Wall School of Public Affairs. The assessment and community engagement processes helped develop the job description to fill the City’s top law enforcement position.
“This has been an extensive and transparent search process,” said Layton. “Each part of the process has been focused on the right person for the job – the person who will help local law enforcement evolve and respond to the growing needs of our community.”
The finalists, who were announced by Layton during Mayor Jeff Longwell’s regular news briefing, have extensive law enforcement experience and professional accomplishments. They are:
• Joel F. Fitzgerald, Sr., the Chief of Police in Allentown, PA, since December of 2013. Fitzgerald also served as Chief of Police in Missouri City, Texas from 2009-2013. He also served as the Commanding Officer for a narcotics unit in the City of Philadelphia, where he began his law enforcement career in 1992. In Philadelphia, he held leadership roles in drug investigation, community policing and patrol. Fitzgerald has a bachelor’s degree from Villanova University, a master’s degree from Eastern University and a doctorate degree from Northcentral University.
• Terri Moses, Executive Director of Safety Services for the Wichita Public School system and a former Deputy Chief with the WPD. Moses served more than 32 years in the WPD. In addition to serving as a WPD Deputy Chief from 1995 - 2013, Moses served various positions with the WPD from 1981-1995 including as Captain, Lieutenant, Detective and Officer. She has a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from Wichita State University.
• Gregory W. Stevens, an Assistant Police Chief in Lubbock, Texas, where he has worked since 1992. In addition to serving as Assistant Police Chief since 2004, Stevens has served as a Captain of Uniform Patrol, Special Operations and the Administration Section. He’s also served as a Lieutenant and Commander of Internal Affairs and as a Sergeant and Detective. Stevens is a retired Intelligence Officer with the U.S. Navy (1998-2015) and he served in the U.S. Air Force as a Sergeant (1988-1992). He has bachelor’s degree from Wayland Baptist University and a master’s degree from Texas Tech.
A public forum to meet the candidates is scheduled from 6:30-9:30 on Aug. 31 at Century II Convention Hall. Attendees will get an hour to meet the candidates and ask them questions. Layton will serve as the public forum moderator. More details regarding the public forum will be released later.
The Police Chief manages a nearly $82 million budget and supervises 836 employees. The WPD is the largest police department in Kansas and serves a population base of more than 382,368 residents. Former WPD Chief Norman Williams retired in September 2014.