12-16-2018  12:44 pm      •     
City of Seattle
Published: 29 May 2018

After extensive community outreach and a thorough review of many highly qualified applicants, the Police Search Committee and process forwarded to Seattle Mayor Jenny A. Durkan three candidates who best meet the community's requirements for Seattle's next Chief of Police. Mayor Durkan received the list of finalists for the next Chief of the Seattle Police Department this afternoon. In the coming weeks, she will interview each finalist and then nominate one for the position.  The three finalists are: Eddie Frizell, Inspector, Minneapolis Police Department; Cameron S. McLay, Former Chief of Police, City of Pittsburgh; and Ely Reyes, Assistant Chief, Austin Police Department.

The City of Seattle and the Police Search Committee conducted a robust community engagement process, hosting 14 community meetings and events and partnering with 50 community organizations. More than 2,600 community members completed the Community Input Survey, up from 191 in 2014. The survey and workshops were open to all Seattle community members and businesses and provided opportunities for people to share their thoughts about the characteristics and experience necessary for the next police chief.   

The results of the survey show that Seattle residents want a Chief of Police who understands the importance of community, and is committed to developing lasting relationships and trust, particularly with communities of color. The majority of responders agreed that the next police chief should be a courageous leader dedicated to reform, especially in improving relationships with the public and training officers more rigorously in de-escalation and cultural sensitivity. The survey indicated that the next police chief should demonstrate an ability to set high standards within the department, understand the history of policing in the United States, build confidence with diverse communities, and make all Seattle neighborhoods safer. You can read the full Community Input Survey and Engagement Report here.  

The 25 members of the Police Search Committee, many of whom have extensive experience in criminal justice reform, collaborated with a national search firm to attract many qualified applicants from across the country. At the end of the community input process in late March, the Committee worked together to narrow the field of applicants.   

About the three finalists: 

  • Eddie Frizell, Inspector, Minneapolis Police Department. Eddie Frizell is an Inspector with the Minneapolis Police Department, which he has served for 25 years. Inspector Frizell also holds the rank of Colonel in the Minnesota Army National Guard, which he served for 28 years, including a deployment to Iraq.
  • Cameron S. McLay, Former Chief of Police, City of Pittsburgh. Cameron S. McLay is the former Chief of Police for the City of Pittsburgh. Prior to his service to Pittsburgh, Chief McLay spent 29 years at the City of Madison Police Department.
  • Ely Reyes, Assistant Chief, Austin Police Department. Ely Reyes is an Assistant Chief with the Austin Police Department, which he has served for 22 years. He also served in the United States Army and performed six years of overseas service. He is a recipient of the Purple Heart, Lifesaving Medal, and three Meritorious Service Medals.

The Mayor will review the qualifications of the three finalists, interview each, and nominate one individual for the position of Chief of Police in the coming weeks.   

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