September 3, 2021
Earlier today, I announced my appointment
of Robert Clark as the new Director of Public Safety.
Some of you may recognize Robert’s
name from our search for police chief. He was one of the finalists under
consideration, but ultimately it was decided his background and expertise were
better suited for the role of safety director, when the position became
Robert has 35 years of local, federal
and international law enforcement experience and most recently served as the
national police superintendent for Trinidad and Tobago. Prior to that, much of
his career was spent with the U.S. Department of Justice where he served as
Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Los Angeles Field Office. There he
earned a reputation for developing community engagement strategies that
ultimately helped the FBI make serious gains in reducing violent crime and
breaking up notorious gangs in some of LA’s most challenged neighborhoods.
Robert has Ohio roots, and a very
compelling story that led him to a career in law enforcement. He grew up in
foster care in Youngstown after his father was murdered. But for the coaches
and mentors in his life as a teen, he might have pursued a different path. As
it were, he began his career with Youngstown Police before joining the FBI and
ascending through the ranks.
Robert has a great deal of experience
in organizational change and understands the critical nature of relationships
in effecting outcomes. He is committed to our mission of policing reform, but
is keenly aware of the need to support our police officers in the midst of
increasing neighborhood violence. And, his experience will not only be
applicable to the Division of Police, but to Fire and all of the Department of
Public Safety. His role will be to direct and support Police Chief Bryant, Fire
Chief Happ and all of our safety personnel.
Director Clark starts on Sept. 26,
2021. Please join me in welcoming him to Columbus. I know he looks forward to
meeting with our residents and getting to know our vibrant and distinctive