Wheeler expects to pick next police chief in July

City will conduct its own national search

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, PPB Chief Mike Marshman at a press conference about the cold Portland weather, January 10, 2017 (KOIN)
Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, Former PPB Chief Mike Marshman at a press conference about the cold Portland weather, January 10, 2017 (KOIN)

PORTLAND, Ore. (PORTLAND TRIBUNE) — Mayor Ted Wheeler has decided the city will conduct its own national search for the next police chief and expects to make a final decision in July.

Wheeler promised the next chief would be selected after a national search when he ran for mayor last year. After he took office in January, the tried to line up a national recruitment firm to help with the search. Only one expressed interest, however, and Wheeler decided the city’s Human Resources Bureau could do a better job.

“Portland is unique, as is our city’s approach to process and engagement. In the end we felt we were more capable of undertaking this project in a way that reflected our community approach and values,” says Wheeler spokesman Michael Cox.

According to Cox, “Human Resources is putting together a project plan and proposed budget this week. We have already started meeting with stakeholders to get their input on characteristics and qualification to inform the job announcement. We expect to have the project plan, budget, and job announcement done in April, open the position for applications in May, then interview candidates and make an offer in July.”

Cox says Wheeler agrees with the characteristics and qualification for the next chief that have been proposed by the stakeholders he has met with.

“The Mayor has a strong view of what he expects and a lot of that is reflected in what we’re hearing from the stakeholders: an ability to lead and reform, a belief in community policing, and a dedication to diversity,” Cox says.

Mike Marshman, the last permanent chief, is currently on paid administrative leave pending an Independent Police Review investigation into a report that he directed his executive assistant to forge his signature on a document saying he attended a mandatory training session he actually missed. The assistant, Lt. Michael Leasure, is also on leave. Assistant Chief Chris Davis is serving as acting chief.

The Portland Tribune is a KOIN media partner.