Community meets Bloomington’s finalists for police chief

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BLOOMINGTON (WEEK) — The City of Bloomington says there are two, experienced finalists hoping to be Chief of Bloomington’s Police Department. Monday night, they faced the public.

One of them is almost nine-year, Springfield Police Chief Kenny Winslow.

“If I’m going to uproot my family and go, I want to go to a department that is professional and progressive,” said Chief Winslow.

The other, a 22-year Illinois State Trooper and Bloomington resident, Colonel Jamal Simington.

“Figure out how we can do better. How we can take this department from good, to great,” said Col. Simington.

Both looking to fill the seat that’s been vacant for almost a year now.

Monday night the community had a chance to meet the candidates. Both said the public’s biggest concern was trust with the police department.

“It is important that we have that on the table, that we are again engaged in the community groups,” said Col. Simington.

“They’re looking for a chief who’s going to be engaging, who’s going to be out there in the community,” said Chief Winslow.

Both agreed continuing and improving community relations was a goal.

Simington said if he was chosen, he was ready to come in with open ears to evaluate what was going well, and what needed improving.

“Bringing a strategic plan to the department on how we will engage with community members, how we will engage with community groups, how we will make the police department more efficient, how we will recruit,” said Col. Simington.

Chief Winslow added to that and said he wanted to evaluate before coming in and making changes.

“I gotta build relationships first. The relationship has to first build from the low patrolman all the way to the command staff. You have to earn trust,” said Chief Winslow.

The city hopes to have a decision on who will lead more than 150 officers by next week.

The post Community meets Bloomington’s finalists for police chief appeared first on WEEK.

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