When Did Leadership Take a Backseat?
Updated: Dec 8, 2022
By: ABQRAW Editorial Board
One of these doesn't look like the others, and we don't mean the cute kid (Photo from APD Official FB page) On 12/1/2022 The department held their monthly uniformed and non uniformed awards presentation in the chief's office. This man in the green pajama pants is the typical dress code for APD's highest ranking member of the department.
There was a time when real leaders filled the seats of such positions all over the Country, at all levels of government. Those leaders carried themselves in a way that inspired those around them. They held themselves to a standard no less than what they expected from their peers and subordinates.
Supervisor of the month shows up in a suit for his award while his Chief is dressed as a park ranger. Credit to Deputy Police Chief Cori Lowe who wore a formal uniform for her subordinates award.
Today, in Albuquerque, we have a police chief who has so little respect for his own officers’ achievements that he refuses to “dress the part.” The old adage says, “dress for the job that you want, not the job that you have.” In Chief Harold Medina’s case, he clearly wants the job of “retired." Every month the Albuquerque Police Department issues its "Officer of the Month” and “Team of the Month” along with other awards. The officers always wear their “Class A” dress uniforms, usually with ties adorning them. The Officers look sharp and professional, as one would expect for an awards ceremony. Unfortunately, their appointed Chief of Police and often other Command Staff members are dressed down in “BDU” (battle dress uniform) style pants and polo shirts. Their boots are often wrecked, making the entire “leadership” group look lazy and purvey how little they care about their officers’ commendations.
NMSP Officers receiving a "life saving" award recently at APD headquarters. NMSP Officers are proudly in their Official uniforms while APD's Chief wears his park ranger pajamas uniform. Also pictured is a detective with a nice tie and APD's Deputy Commander Kyle Hartsock in a button up shirt and sneakers
While most of their duties are unlikely to include the necessity of dress uniforms, it may behoove them to keep a set in their offices for such occasions as award ceremonies and press conferences. One of the most important roles of a leader is to set an example for those in their charge. With all that is happening within the Albuquerque Police Department, such a small gesture of showing support and pride in your officers could go a long way toward progress.
Chief Medina, if you’re going to hold your officers responsible for their appearance and every action they take, the least you can do is hold yourself and your command staff to the same (preferably higher) standard.
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