Louisville Metro Police Chief Robert White is preparing to take the top job with the Denver Police Department, but he hopes he’s remembered for improving police and community relations.
White says community policing initiatives have allowed the department and residents to gain a higher mutual respect for each other during his tenure.
“I think transparency, which is kind of built around respect which really positions us to be very effective in fighting crime,” Chief White says. “While there is still much to be done I think we’ve made a lot of in roads as it relates to connecting with the community for the ultimate purpose of using the eyes and ears of that community to fight crime.”
While he believes he improved communication between the force and the community, White also says he could have done more to reach out to the rank-and-file officers.
“I spent a lot of time outside this department in our community trying to be a voice for the police department and also be a voice for the community. I really felt that was my role,” he says. “As it relates to what many inside the police department perceived that I did not do effectively as it related to being a voice for the men and women of the department. I thought I was, but obviously there’s a perception by some that I wasn’t as effective as I should have been.”
Mayor Greg Fischer has named Ishmon Burks as the city’s interim police chief and hopes to hire a permanent replacement by April. White starts his new job in Denver next week.