Barry announces search for new police chief
Government of the
District of Columbia


Wednesday, December 3, 1997

CONTACT: Linda Wharton Boyd
202-727-6224; 202-727-9561-fax

Mayor Barry Forming Search Committee for New D.C. Police Chief
Nominees Drawn from a Wide Cross-Section of the Community

Mayor Marion Barry, Jr., is in the process of selecting a 21-member search committee which will assist with choosing the District's new police chief.

Metropolitan Police Department Chief Larry Soulsby stepped down on Nov. 25 following a series of controversies dogging him that he said distracted from the good work the department is doing. Mayor Barry named Assistant Chief Sonya T. Proctor, a 23-year veteran, acting chief on the heels of Chief Soulsby's departure.

She is the first African American woman to head the 3,700-member department. Before her appointment, Chief Proctor was assistant chief for personnel and training.

"Searching for a new police chief is an important first step in correcting some of the many problems affecting the police department," Mayor Barry said. "With a competent, qualified, untainted leader at the top, we expect these qualities to filter down through the rest of the department. Just as crucial is the fact that stabilizing the department should also lead to greater community confidence in the department and a continuation of the trend toward reducing crime."

Mr. Hallem Williams, an employee in the Office of Grants Management, has agreed to head the search committee. Another person who has agreed to serve on the committee is former FBI Director and retired Judge William Webster, Mayor Barry said this morning.

The committee is drawn from a broad cross-section of the community and includes businesspeople, community activists, jurists, the seven chairpersons of the District's Police Citizens Advisory Councils, law enforcement specialists and others. Members will meet, determine the criteria they will use to choose prospective applicants and then come up with its own recommendations.

The Mayor is also consulting with D.C. City Council members and Congressional representatives, such as D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton, Virginia Rep. Thomas Davis and other lawmakers from the Washington Metropolitan area and has asked them to submit their choices for the search committee.

Norm Roberts and Associates, a noted executive search firm, will work with the committee in the selection process. This week, the Mayor retained the firm to begin the nationwide search for a new chief.

The Mayor expects the search to take between 90 and 120 days.

He also said he hopes Chief Proctor will apply for consideration as permanent chief.


D.C. Office of Communications
One Judiciary Square, Suite 1100
Washington, D.C. 20001

D.C. Citizens Advisory Committee
on the Selection of the Chief of Police

Chair:Mr. Hallem Williams
Former Director of the District of Columbia
Department of Corrections

Chief of Police Citizen Advisory Council Chairs:

1st DistrictMr. Skip Coburn
2nd DistrictMr. James Lively
3rd DistrictMr. Stanley J. Mayes
4th DistrictMr. Alan Morrison
5th DistrictMs. Norma M. Broadnax
6th DistrictRev. Thomas Alston
7th DistrictMs. Lendia Johnson
At LargeMr. Tony Cheng

Community Members:

Judge (Ret.) William Webster
Former Director, FBI

Attorney Myrna Tucker, Chair
Commission On Violence Against Women

Ms. Susan Williams, Chairman
The Greater Washington Board of Trade &
President, Bracy Williams and Co.

Ms. Barbara Zartman, President
Federation of Citizens Association

Dr. Sylvia Hill, Chair
Dept. of Urban Affairs and Professor of Criminal Justice
University of the District of Columbia

Ms. Romaine B. Thomas, President
D.C. Federation of Civic Associations

Rev. Willie Wilson, Pastor
Union Temple Baptist Church

Mr. Mario Acosta, Executive Director
Latino Civil Rights Task Force

Mr. Mark Thompson, Coordinator,
Police Task Force

Mr. Rick Rosendall, President
Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington

Ms. Sharen Shaw Johnson, Executive Director
Gay Men and Lesbians Opposing Violence

Mr. Ronald Robertson, President
Fraternal Order of Police

Mr. Ron Hampton, Executive Director
National Black Police Association

Mr. Carl Rowan, Jr.
Attorney at Law
Rowan adn Growdy

Mr. Donald Santorelli, Chairman
National Committee on Community Corrections &
Federal City Council Task Force on Corrections

Ms. Wilhelmina Rolark, President
United Black Fund

Mr. John Green
Med-Lantic Corp.

GLAA calls for Harlan resignation

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