CEDARVILLE — He was Cleveland’s first African-American chief of police. He has appeared on CNN as an expert source. And now Dr. Patrick Oliver, director of the criminal justice program at Cedarville University, is being recognized around the United States for his mentoring program for minorities aspiring to law enforcement leadership.
The Mentoring Potential Chief Executive Officers Program, led by Oliver, received detailed recognition in the September 2018 Police Chief magazine, a publication of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. The publication is distributed to 152 counties.
Oliver founded the mentoring program for aspiring chief executive officers (CEOs) for the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives (NOBLE). His biblical mentoring model prepares law enforcement executives for leadership positions and improves their chances of effectively leading a law enforcement agency. Furthermore, the program’s primary goal is to help minorities aspiring to law enforcement leadership to overcome professional development and career progression challenges.
Since 2008, 26 individuals have graduated from the program, and 15 (58 percent) have become CEOs of law enforcement agencies. All but two graduates have been promoted or appointed to a higher rank after entering the program (88 percent). Every graduate who has pursued a law enforcement CEO position has been successful in getting hired.
This two-year program has three major components: classroom instruction, a mentor assignment and a written professional development plan.
Mentoring is conducted by experienced police executives with at least three years’ service as a law enforcement CEO or chief. The mentor provides coaching and instruction about effective personal attributes and competencies in law enforcement leadership to the protege. Several graduates have returned to be mentors, because they want to give back to the program that helped them.
In addition, the program focuses on areas such as team building, strategic planning, human resource management, developing organizational statements, policy and procedure development.
“When the proteges tell me they got the job, I feel like they are one of my kids — I feel the pride of a dad. That makes the time and investment into this program worthwhile,” Oliver said. “It is by far my greatest professional accomplishment; there’s nothing like it. All honor and glory is to God for the success each these individuals has achieved. There is nothing that I have done to make this program succeed the way it has. God has blessed it because it teaches the biblical principle of stewardship to every protege. They are taught that every professional assignment is a ministry and to do it all for the glory of God.”