As Outgoing Chief Renee Hall’s Time In Dallas Draws Near Its Expiration, The City Is Getting Closer To Naming Her Successor. Here’s Who They’re Looking At.

The search for the next chief of The Dallas Police Department will soon come to an end.

Seven finalists are currently being vetted to lead the department after the city received 36 applications for the open position from around the country. The finalists will be interviewed next week, with Dallas City Manager  T.C. Broadnax coordinating virtual interviews and conducting community panels. They’ll also be asked to answer pre-recorded questions from City Council members.

The search comes after current Police Chief U. Renee Hall submitted her resignation from the post in September. While she hoped to be out of office by November 10, Broadnax asked her to finish out the year while the city searched for her successor. Her last day on the job will now come on December 15, at which point current Dallas Assistant Police Chief Lonzo Anderson will become interim chief as the hunt for a new top cop continues.

Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson, who has engaged in a publicly contentious back and forth with Hall since she submitted her resignation, says he wants more community involvement in the search for her replacement — all for the sake of transparency, he says. Per a statement the mayor issued the Dallas Morning News: “I hope the remainder of this selection process plays out in a more transparent way and that the city manager ultimately selects a candidate who will partner with our communities to address the unacceptable increases in violent crime in our city.”

The search for Hall’s replacement comes not only after a year of heightened calls for criminal justice reform, but as 2020 has seen its highest murder rate since 2004. In a year that saw DPD fire rubber bullets and tear gas — a chemical agent banned in warfare — upon the citizens its officers are sworn to protect, it’s clear that making the right hire here is more critical than ever before.

Below, let’s a quick look at the seven finalists Broadnax announced this week for the job. For a more exhaustive look at the search for our next police chief, we recommend checking out the DMN’s in-depth breakdown.

  • RaShall Brackney. The only woman among the finalists, and the current police chief in Charlottesville, Virginia, Brackney has held her post since 2018. She became the first Black woman to lead the Charlottesville department after her predecessor resigned in the wake of the Unite the Right rally. She has more than 30 years of experience in policing. She’s also gone viral this week for a video in which she asks the leaders of a church to be terminated from their positions after having criticized her department.
  • Eddie Garcia. Born in Puerto Rico, Garcia counts nearly 30 years of service for the San Jose Police Department, where he currently holds the job of chief. According to the DMN, he’ll retire from the SJPD on Saturday. For what it’s worth, San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo has publicly expressed his support of Garcia to Mayor Johnson.
  • Jeff Spivey. After having joined the Irving Police Department in 1986, Spivey has led his city’s police as chief since 2017. Before rising to his department’s top rank, he served as the Dallas suburb’s assistant chief beginning in 2011. He is the sole white candidate among the finalists.
  • Avery Moore. With almost 30 years at DPD under his belt, Deputy Police Chief Avery Moore is an expected finalist for the job. He served as the East Patrol Division Commander before his current post, where he leads the special investigations unit. Notably, he was the SWAT commander on the day of the Downtown Dallas police shootings on July 7, 2016.
  • Malik Aziz. Previously a finalist for the job in 2017, Aziz is also currently a finalist for the same job in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In his bid for the role up north, Aziz landed endorsements from the local chapters of NAACP and the National Black Police Association.
  • Rueben Ramirez. With 25 years in DPD’s ranks, Ramirez currently holds the title of deputy chief, where he commands the Criminal Investigations Bureau. He is also the department’s legislative affairs coordinator and Latino liaison.
  • Albert Martinez. After nearly 27 years with DPD, Martinez retired from the department and took on the job as the director of security for the Catholic Diocese of Dallas. Before his retirement, Martinez had risen to the rank of deputy chief at DPD. He landed the role with the Dallas Catholic Diocese just one year ago, in the aftermath of public outcry regarding the diocese’s handling of sexual abuse allegations.
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