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Portland launches national search for next police chief

Police union favors current chief but Ted Wheeler promised a search when he ran for mayor.

Portland officially began recruiting its next police chief on Monday, beginning a national search that is expected to be completed in July with a job offer coming by fall.

"The nature of police work in America is changing, and Portland deserves the chance to evaluate national talent in our efforts to create a 21st Century police force focused on building community trust, embracing diversity, and living up to the highest standards of transparency and accountability," says Mayor Ted Wheeler, who is also Police Commissioner and oversees the Portland Police Bureau.

The job posting was developed using feedback given at a series of meetings attended by invited stakeholders. It outlines the minimum qualifications for the position, describes the ideal candidate.

Among other things, it says applicants must be a college graduate, have at least 10 years of law enforcement experience with at least five years in a management role, and have a record of supporting community policing and organizational change.

An added benefit would be prior experience helping police and mental health professionals work together.

The salary range is given as $143,312 to $205,379 a year.

You can read the posting at preview.tinyurl.com/m4wkfoa.

The public can offer their opinions and feedback through an online survey at tinyurl.com/kcvu4o6.

"This national search gives our community the chance to address fundamental questions about the direction of policing in Portland. I am dedicated to receiving and acting upon input provided by the community throughout this process," says Wheeler.

The Portland Police Association that represents rank-and-file bureau employees has released a survey that says the vast majority of its members prefer keeping existing Chief Mike Marshman. Wheeler promised to conduct a national search for chief when ran for mayor but has encouraged Marshman to apply.

According to the posting, the Recruitment Activity Schedule is as follows:

• Open search process: May 15

• Application deadline: June 12

• Initial Evaluation Process: Week of June 19

• Initial Interviews: Week of June 24

• Finalists Identified: Week of July 3

• Panel and Final Interviews: Week of July 17

According to the city, all applications will be reviewed for minimum qualifications. Based on an evaluation of the application materials, those applicants whose materials best reflect the experience, knowledge, and skillset for the position, will be invited to participate in telephone interviews. The best qualified candidates will move on to panel interviews. The Mayor will make the final selection for the position.