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Santa Monica Taps Long Beach for Top Cop

By Jorge Casuso

November 9 – Long Beach Deputy Police Chief Timothy Jackman -- who advocates a holistic, open and collaborative approach to policing -- has been selected as Santa Monica’s new chief by City Manager Lamont Ewell. He will take over the post on December 11.

Jackman, who has a strong background in finance and budget management, is known for having made innovative strides in tackling Long Beach’s youth crime and homeless problems, Ewell said.

He worked with the city’s School District to pilot new initiatives, including a program that provides an artistic alternative to athletics, and developed a program to train officers on alternatives to cope with homeless and mentally ill persons.

“I can’t believe we found one person with such a broad breath of experience in a multitude of areas,” Ewell said. “I think he is an incredibly intelligent and forward-looking individual. He’s a great guy.”

Jackman has extensive experience in both field operations and administration and has held a wide array of posts, including community relations, internal affairs, information technology and terrorism prevention, Ewell said.

A 23-year veteran of the Long Beach Police Department and deputy chief for the past four years, Jackman says he believes in including all the “stakeholders” when it comes to public safety.

“There are a lot of different people that must help out,” said Jackman, who was chosen after a two-month, nationwide search to permanently replace Chief James T. Butts, Jr. “Santa Monica obviously doesn’t have much of a problem getting people involved.

“You must have collaborative problem solving with all of the stakeholders, including residents, businesses and government and civic institutions,” Jackman said. “You have to work together.

“Police have to go out and build relationships with the people they work with. It’s not all police down. Sometimes people want to drive their own solutions. They don’t want to be dictated to.”

In addition to encouraging community input to help address public safety issues, Jackman has been involved in civic efforts in Long Beach – where he serves on several community boards, including the Corporation for the Arts and the Conservation Corps, Ewell said.

The City Manager said he was “impressed” with Jackman’s “strong commitment to working with and including the community in decision making.

“He has a demonstrated practice of collaboration and being a strong contributor to citywide team efforts,” Ewell said.

Jackman has a strong track record in dealing with two of Santa Monica’s top public safety priorities – preventing violence among at-risk youth and addressing the homeless problem, Ewell said.

In 2004, Jackman developed a program to train officers on alternatives to cope with homeless and mentally ill persons and worked closely with mental health professionals to train more than 100 officers, according to the City Manager.

Both youth violence and homelessness, Jackman said, must be addressed “on a regional basis.

“If you try to solve it from a single city perspective, it’s very difficult to do,” Jackman said. “You’ve got to have collaboration with other law enforcement agencies and with the community.”

Jackman was one of the top seven finalists interviewed by a panel of residents, businesses representatives, clergy and school officials last month, Ewell said.

“This was one of the most difficult selections I’ve had to make because of the outstanding qualifications and talent of our internal candidates,” said Ewell. “I know Mr. Jackman will be as successful here as he has been in Long Beach.”

Jackman will leave a department of 1,500 employees and $173 million budget for the Santa Monica Police Department, which has 468 employees and a budget of nearly $60 million.

“I am thrilled to be coming to Santa Monica,” said Jackman, who has a B.S. from the University of the State of New York and an M.B.A. from the University of California at Irvine. “It’s an honor, and I’m looking forward to it.”






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