Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Chief Grubbs

The city sent out a press release today announcing the appointment of Jeff Grubbs as Police Chief after holding the position open for 13 months.  I see no mention in the release regarding the requirement that the chief, as with other top officials, live within the Carbondale city limits. I did catch part of the press conference though, and when Chief Grubbs was questioned about the residency requirement, he was pretty non-committal, saying only that he met the requirement and that he wanted to move on past it. I hope that doesn't mean that he and the city did something cutesy allowing him to meet the letter of the law but not its spirit as that would be a really lousy image to set. The city has turned a blind eye to other officials living outside the city limits in the past, excusing them due to their being in the process of selling their home and relocating to Carbondale, a process that conveniently took years to complete.

Carbondale City Manager Kevin Baity has announced the selection of Jeff Grubbs as the Police Chief for the City of Carbondale. “Today marks the beginning of a new chapter for the City of Carbondale and more particularly for the Carbondale Police Department. Thirteen months ago I announced Jeff Grubbs as the Interim Police Chief. This was not the first time that Jeff was called upon to serve in this capacity. In 2008 following the retirement of Chief Robert Ledbetter, Jeff served for six months in the same capacity. One might say Jeff has earned his experience as Chief during times of turmoil and uncertainty” said Kevin Baity, City Manager.

Carbondale's newest Police Chief has over 25 years of experience including 11 years at the executive command level. He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy, holds both Bachelors and Masters degrees from Southern Illinois University, has served as a Deputy Chief for over 8 years, has served as a canine handler, a special response team leader, has worked for four other southern Illinois police units, and has received numerous awards of distinction from his peers and other law enforcement agencies. 

Police Chief Jeff Grubbs was selected after the City conducted a national search this summer for the position of Police Chief. Applications where received from candidates from within the United States as well as from two foreign countries.  The candidates were evaluated based on several categories. These included experience working in an ethnically diverse community, working in a town/gown community, managing budgets and grants, having a minimum number of overall years of law enforcement experience as well as a minimum of five years of command staff experience, and having an educational background specifically pertaining to law enforcement.

Four candidates were selected from the applicant pool and offered interviews. A panel was selected consisting of Dr. Deborah McCoy from the City of Carbondale, Harvey Welch representing the Carbondale Board of Police and Fire Commissioners and Ben Newman, Public Safety Director for Southern Illinois University. At the end of the interview session, the panel made a recommendation based on their individual assessment and judgement.  “ I am pleased to say the recommendation was unanimous. The recommendation, together with my personal evaluation has led to today's announcement.”   Police Chief Jeff Grubbs will begin his appointment immediately.

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