Jobs at Western

Assistant Director for Public Safety / Assistant Chief of Police

Apply now Work type: Permanent Full Time
Location: Western Main Campus
Categories: Public Safety, Business and Financial Affairs

Position Title

Assistant Director for Public Safety / Assistant Chief of Police

About the University Western Washington University, with over 15,000 students in seven colleges and the graduate school, is nationally recognized for its educational programs, students and faculty. The campus is located in Bellingham, Washington, a coastal community of 83,000 overlooking Bellingham Bay, the San Juan Islands and the North Cascades Mountain range. The city lies 90 miles north of Seattle and 60 miles south of Vancouver, British Columbia. Western is the highest-ranking public, master’s-granting university in the Pacific Northwest, according to the 2017 U.S. News & World Report rankings.
About the Department The Public Safety Department supports Western’s mission to bring together individuals of diverse backgrounds and perspectives in an inclusive, student-centered university that develops the potential of learners and the well-being of communities. We encourage applications from women, people of color, people with disabilities, veterans, and other candidates from underrepresented backgrounds and with diverse experiences interested in this opportunity.
About the Position

As our Assistant Director/Assistant Chief of Police you will report and work in partnership with the Director for Public Safety/University Chief of Police in managing the departments operations including University Police Operations, Public Safety Dispatch, and Emergency Preparedness/Emergency Planning.

You will play an integral role in providing an open, transparent leadership environment that emphasizes employee engagement, promotes diversity, encourages positive morale, and promotes effective employee mentorship and development within the Department of Public Safety. The successful candidate possesses a proven history of high integrity, accountability, including having difficult development conversations with employees when required, and the ability to do the right thing, at the right time, for the right reasons.

You will provide effective and efficient law enforcement and public safety services to the citizens of the University community. Responsible for managing a staff of approximately 22 employees and 21 part-time student employees who are responsible for providing these services while maintaining exemplary professional standards. Receive and respond, or oversee the response, to citizen complaints concerning misconduct, rule violation, and/or other special confidential investigation requests; examine personnel and case records to ensure that personnel conform to prescribed standards of conduct; conduct in-depth case analyses and make disciplinary recommendations to the Director for Public Safety/Chief of Police, if applicable; oversee the department’s training, recruitment/selection and accreditation efforts; prepare periodic reports; monitor staffing and take command in emergencies in civil disorders or disasters; and perform other related duties. Assist the Director for Public Safety/Chief of Police in the development and control of the annual budget. Second in command of the Department of Public Safety and to assume command of the Department in the absence of the Director for Public Safety/Chief of Police.


Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

Provide leadership to a multi-faceted organization. Plan, direct, and manage the operations of Patrol and Support Services and over the entire department in the absence of the Director for Public Safety/Chief of Police. Assist the Director for Public Safety/Chief of Police in the development and control of the annual budget including monitoring expenditures, making projections, and preparing budget documents. Assist the Director for Public Safety/Chief of Police in the formulation and implementation of departmental policy, procedures, rules, regulations, and programs.

Maintain a fully present, hands on awareness of the Department of Public Safety, and a working knowledge of personnel for the purposes of mentorship, training, and development. Monitor department operations by attending various meetings and by regularly reviewing schedules, timesheets, criminal reports, operational reports and other department activity reports for quality and approval.

Evaluate subordinate performance; participate in personnel actions such as appointments, promotions, demotions, discipline and scheduling; review crime trends. Participate in the recruitment and placement of personnel, assign and/or conduct background investigations on candidates that successfully complete the selection process.

Supervise the efforts of department personnel to conduct departmental self-assessment and related accreditation activities.

Foster communications and cooperation with other law enforcement agencies, departments and personnel. 

Respond to scenes of major crimes, emergency situations or other critical incidents and support or direct activities as necessary.

Conduct University investigations in coordination with other University departments, such as the Office of the Internal Auditor and the Equal Opportunity Office on sensitive matters. 

Assign and/or conduct internal investigations for alleged violations of department policy, procedures, and standards.

Monitor compliance to departmental and University policies and procedures. Responsible for publishing the Department’s annual report, and the Annual Security Report information to the Dean of Students Office as part of Clery Act compliance.

Oversee the training for all Department personnel.

Serve as the Department’s public information officer in the absence of the Director for Public Safety/Chief of Police.

Participate in labor/management relations and negotiations.

Manage all investigations conducted within the Department.

Manage and oversee campus emergency preparedness/emergency planning activities, including plan development, response team coordination, information management, and campus training.

Required Qualifications
  • Graduate of an accredited college or university with a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice, Police Science, Public Administration or a related field plus a minimum of five (5) years of experience in a supervisory capacity in law enforcement administration.


    High school diploma or GED, plus a minimum of seven (7) years of experience in a supervisory capacity in law enforcement administration.

    • Equivalency can be used in substitution for a degree, but cannot be used where there are legal requirements, such as license/certification/registration. 

  • State of Washington commissioned officer or able to obtain commission status through the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission within one (1) year of employment.

  • Possess a thorough knowledge of applicable federal laws as well as the local and state laws in which the candidate resides and within twelve (12) months of hire, possess a thorough knowledge of the state of Washington and local laws.
  • Qualified in firearms safety, including meeting WWU Police Department firearms qualifications standards, and the ability to meet department qualifications standards with a department-issued firearm within thirty (30) days of hire.

  • Demonstrated interest in best practices through self-improvement by taking advantage of educational opportunities in new laws, innovative administrative practices, and modern police sciences.

  • Demonstrated leadership with establishing and maintaining positive working relationships with various constituent groups, including the university community, the public, and governmental authorities. 

  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively and sensitively with individuals from diverse backgrounds.
  • Demonstrated ability to plan, research and coordinate within a complex organization, and to develop and write policies.

  • Demonstrated ability to effectively supervise a large number of people and projects, and to train, develop and mentor employees.

  • Demonstrated integrity and high personal standards of conduct, and the ability to maintain confidentiality on sensitive cases and projects.

  • Demonstrated ability to prepare and effectively present both oral and written information concerning the activities and operations within the department. 

  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience with collaboration between law enforcement and mental health providers in developing a compassionate and effective response to persons in crisis.
Preferred Qualifications


  • Master’s Degree

  • Graduate of Northwestern University’s School of Police Staff and Command, the FBI National Academy, or similar type executive training program

  • Experience in higher education policing

  • Working knowledge of Public Safety related software/applications

  • Working knowledge of budget development and control, including monitoring expenditures, making projections, and preparing budget documents

  • Successful completion of Clery Act Compliance Training Academy or similar 40-hour Clery Act compliance course

  • Certification in the National Incident Management System (NIMS) including but not limited to: ICS 100, ICS 200, ICS 300, and ICS 400
Salary  Commensurate with experience
Application Instructions

A cover letter and resume are required. Application materials should address how you meet or exceed each identified qualification of the position. 

Please include the names and contact information of three professional references.

A background check and polygraph is required for position finalists.

Potential applicants may inquire confidentially to: (360) 650-3407

Closing Date Notes

Position closes Sunday, January 21, 2018. 

Western Washington University (WWU) is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer committed to assembling a diverse, broadly trained faculty and staff. Women, minorities, people with disabilities and veterans are strongly encouraged to apply. In compliance with applicable laws and in furtherance of its commitment to fostering an environment that welcomes and embraces diversity, WWU does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex (including pregnancy and parenting status), disability, age, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status or genetic information in its programs or activities, including employment, admissions, and educational programs. See WWU’s Policy on Ensuring Equal Opportunity and Prohibiting Discrimination and Retaliation. Inquiries may be directed to the Vice Provost for Equal Opportunity and Employment Diversity, Title IX and ADA Coordinator, Equal Opportunity Office, Western Washington University, Old Main 345 (MS 9021), 516 High Street, Bellingham, WA 98225; 360.650.3307 (voice) or 711 (Washington Relay);

WWU is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities upon request. To request this document in an alternate format or to request an accommodation, please contact Human Resources Disability Services, 360.650.3774 or 711 (Washington Relay).

All new employees must comply with the immunization policy and show employment eligibility verification as required by the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Service before beginning work at WWU. A thorough background check will be conducted on all new hires.

Job no: 495484
Advertised: Pacific Standard Time
Applications close: Pacific Standard Time

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