Home > News

Police chief suggests adding six commander positions

Posted Nov. 7, 2017

Archived Content Information and links provided may no longer be accurate.

Police Chief Joel Fitzgerald recommends adding six commander positions to the ranks, allowing the department to select officers who possess the leadership skills, intellect, experience and dedication to build and maintain relationships in the community.

Fitzgerald presented his reorganization recommendations to the City Council during a work session on Tuesday.

Under Fitzgerald’s plan, a commander would be assigned to each of the six police patrol divisions as the highest-ranking uniformed officer.

The Meet and Confer agreement signed by the Fort Worth Police Officers’ Association in June included the rank of commander. The agreement provides the chief the authority to add six appointed, exempt employees between the rank of captain and deputy chief.

The total annual cost to fund six commanders is $1.2 million. The Police Department has identified funding sources for the positions for the FY18 budget year.

Fitzgerald said that officers who hope to reach the commander rank must have a proven record of leadership and service to the department; respect for subordinates, superiors and peers; insightful judgment, strong communication skills, knowledge beyond book learning, continuous self-improvement, approachable demeanor, service before self, a strong commitment to improve the department; and the ability to work with a group to accomplish a goal.

The new positions will create promotional opportunities and will allow for better span of control, management oversight and accountability. These new positions will also allow leadership to have a concentrated focus on first line supervision and will provide better communication throughout the chain of command.

“Commanders allow me to base promotion decisions on performance in commands and my observations of their interactions with City Council and residents,” Chief Fitzgerald said. “I will expect higher performance from those appointed to these positions and of their patrol commands and these appointed positions ensure they continue to demonstrate leadership consistent with our unified mission.”

Police Department representatives have met with Police Officers Association (POA) representatives, and while the POA acknowledges the commander rank was a negotiated component of the meet and confer contract, and the chief has a right to create that rank, the association remains neutral to the idea. The POA neither actively supports nor opposes the creation of the commander rank.

Get articles like this in your inbox weekly. Subscribe to City News

City News

Calendar

Code Rangers: 9 a.m. Dec. 15, 2018; Hazel Harvey Peace Center for Neighborhoods, 818 Missouri Ave.

Mayor Betsy’s Jingle Bike & Ball: 10 a.m. Dec. 15, 2018; Chesapeake Plaza, 100 Pier 1 Plaza.

Trinity Metro Board of Directors: 3:30 p.m. Dec. 17, 2018; Intermodal Transportation Center, Second Floor, Community Room, 1001 Jones Street.
View the agenda »

Disciplinary Appeal of Three-Day Suspension of Roger Ballard: 9 a.m. Dec. 18, 2018; Bob Bolen Public Safety Complex, Classroom #1134, 505 W. Felix Street.
View the agenda »

Deferred Compensation Oversight Committee Special Meeting: 1:30 p.m. Dec. 18, 2018; Fort Worth City Credit Union Board Room, 2309 Montgomery Street.
View the agenda »

Canceled City Council Work Session: 3 p.m. Dec. 18, 2018; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Christmas Social at Hillside Community Center: 6 p.m. Dec. 18, 2018; Hillside Community Center, 1201 E. Maddox.

Civil Service Commission: 6 p.m. Dec. 18, 2018; Bob Bolen Public Safety Complex Auditorium, 505 W. Felix Street.
View the agenda »

Canceled City Council Meeting: 7 p.m. Dec. 18, 2018; Council Chambers, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Commercial Board of Adjustment Work Session: 8:30 a.m. Dec. 19, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
View the agenda »

Commercial Board of Adjustment Public Hearing: 9:30 a.m. Dec. 19, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Chambers, 200 Texas Street.
View the agenda »

Holiday Breakfast and Bingo at Southwest Community Center: 10 a.m. Dec. 19, 2018; Southwest Community Center, 6300 Welch Ave.

Residential Board of Adjustment Work Session: noon Dec. 19, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
View the agenda »

Residential Board of Adjustment Public Hearing: 1 p.m. Dec. 19, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Chambers, 200 Texas Street.
View the agenda »

Christmas Social at Southside Community Center: 4 p.m. Dec. 19, 2018; Southside Community Center, 959 E. Rosedale.

Christmas Bingo at Doc Session Community Center: 6 p.m. Dec. 19, 2018; Andrew Doc Session Community Center, 201 S. Sylvania.

Urban Design Commission Work Session: 10 a.m. Dec. 20, 2018; City Hall, Second Floor, Council Conference Room 290, 200 Texas Street.
View the agenda »

Christmas Brunch at MLK Jr. Community Center: 10 a.m. Dec. 20, 2018; MLK Jr. Community Center, 5565 Truman Drive.

Urban Design Commission Public Hearing: 10 a.m. Dec. 20, 2018; City Hall, second floor, Council Conference Room 290 , 200 Texas Street.
View the agenda »

Prairie Lights at Grand Prairie with Southwest Community Center: 4:30 p.m. Dec. 20, 2018; Southwest Community Center, 6300 Welch Ave.

Toy Giveaway at Riverside Community Center: 5 p.m. Dec. 20, 2018; Riverside Community Center, 3700 E. Belknap.

View the full city calendar and current meetings.