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Rochester closer to finding next police chief after community forum

A community forum was held Wednesday for the public to meet the three final candidates.

Posted: Apr 4, 2018 11:18 PM
Updated: Apr 6, 2018 9:35 AM

ROCHESTER, Minn. – The city is taking the next step in selecting their next chief of police. That’s why they held a community forum for people to meet the final three candidates.

They include:
Capt. Jim Franklin of the Metropolitan Transit Police in Minneapolis
Chief Mark Elliot from Prior Lake, Minnesota
Lt. Roy Alston from Dallas, Texas

Greg Gallas has lived in Rochester for over 30 years. He’s one of dozens of people who came to the forum to hear from the three finalists.

“I think what we're looking for as a community, somebody who's going to enforce the laws that are on the books and take care of the city of Rochester while engaging the community in outreach efforts,” Gallas said.

Each candidate went up to the podium to introduce themselves and answer questions. Topics included leadership, community engagement, and growth.

“With growth comes challenges,” Gallas said, “and I want to know specifically what the next police chief sees those opportunities are and how they're going to specifically address them.”

Ultimately, it’s up to the current Mayor Ardell Brede to select one man for the job, and inform the city council of his decision.

“It's his overwhelming responsibility to choose the next police chief that will best serve all citizens of Rochester,” Gallas said.

Brede knows it’s a big responsibility, especially with his term as mayor ending in less than a year.

“I'm making a decision not necessarily for the mayor, it's for the city of Rochester,” Brede said. “So I can kind of divorce myself a little bit, but I'm thinking about the city. What the city's needs are and who may be best fits that and I've got my own ideas right now, we'll see how this all plays out.”

Community feedback is important to the decision. With the information gathered tonight, those involved are hopeful Brede will make his decision by the end of April.

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