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Portrait of Dr. Yazzie
By The Skanner News | The Skanner News
Published: 20 April 2023

Chief Chuck Lovell and Mayor Ted Wheeler have announced that Rebecca Arredondo Yazzie, Ph.D., MSW, LCSW, has been selected to be the new Civilian Dean of Training at the Portland Police Bureau.

Yazzie has most recently served as the Director of the MSW Program for George Fox University, School of Social Work in Portland. She is also an Associate Professor at George Fox University, School of Social Work.

Yazzie has a Ph.D. in Social Work and Social Research from Portland State University; a Master of Social Work from the School of Social Work, Arizona State University; and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Justice Studies from Arizona State University.

“We are excited for Dr. Yazzie to begin her work with PPB,” said Chief Chuck Lovell. “Training is at the center of everything we do, and this position will be pivotal in implementing critical and innovative training that recognizes the challenges in 21st Century Policing.”

Mayor Wheeler said, "Dr. Yazzie brings a great deal of experience in adult education through a social work lens, which will add important perspectives to the good work at PPB’s Training Division. I look forward to supporting her in this important work."


PPB's Training Division is responsible for ongoing training delivered through the Learning Management System, as well as annual in-service training for Bureau members, Advanced Academy, Sergeant’s Academy and the Community Academy. It is also responsible for all recruits and their training during their probationary period. Adding a Civilian Dean of Training was proposed internally a few years ago, but it became a reality recently when the appropriate funding was granted, and it was incorporated into the City's agreement with the Department of Justice.

The Training Dean will facilitate the design, development, and delivery of training programs for the Portland Police Bureau’s Training Division. They will provide professional development and continuing education to Training Division instructors to ensure that all personnel are highly qualified and well equipped to perform their duties in and provide expertise in developing engaging and effective programs for adult learners through classroom instruction, interactive exercises, role-playing scenarios and on-demand, web-based modules.

Yazzie was selected after a rigorous application process, which included interview panels involving community members, the Albina Ministerial Alliance, PPB’s Equity and Inclusion Manager, a member of the Training Division, Chief Chuck Lovell, Mayor Wheeler and city commissioners’ or their representatives.

The City will host a virtual Community Forum with Yazzie on May 15, 2023, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and she will start her new position in June.

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