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Director of Public Safety and Chief of Police

Gorham , ME, USA | University of Southern Maine

  • Industry:
    Education (Higher)
  • Position Type:
  • Functions:
    General Management
  • Experience:
    10-12 years
Job Description:
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Are you a leader with strong management skills? Do you have a deep-seated sense of compassion and an understanding of others to handle various day to day situations? Are you comfortable with being a highly visible member of the community? Are you committed to ensuring the public safety of a diverse university community? The University of Southern Maine invites applicants for our Director of Public Safety and Chief of Police.

With over 7,000 students and nearly 1,400 regular and temporary employees, the Director of Public Safety plays a vital role in keeping our campus community safe.The Director is responsible for leading USM’s police force (5-7 officers, 2 sergeants, 4 dispatchers, a Police Captain, and an Administrative Specialist), enforcing laws, and advancing community policing and campus safety initiatives. Additionally, the Director of Public Safety acts as USM’s Incident Commander—a key emergency response officer charged with leading the University’s response to emergencies such as the Covid-19 pandemic.The Director of Public Safety is a key partner for Student Affairs, Residential Life, Human Resources, and the USM senior leadership team.This position advises on critical safety and security matters to ensure a positive learning, living, and working environment for students, faculty, staff, and the broader community.

The Director is responsible for ensuring that the University is effectively and efficiently served by the major functions within the purview of the department, which includes emergency preparedness and response, protection of life and property, law enforcement and security functions, fire safety, crime control and investigation, educational programming for personal and institutional safety, and implementation and monitoring of the parking and transportation system on all three USM campuses.The Director works to develop the proper professional and service-oriented attitudes and skills among members of the department, advance the public safety department in congruence with the University’s goals and vision, recruit and retain a talented, diverse police force, and train all officers and staff to enforce federal, state, and local laws, as well as University policies, procedures, and mandates.The Director is responsible for communication with other college and university police and security departments and external law enforcement and safety agencies to maintain awareness of best practices in the profession and to ensure appropriate mutual aid arrangements.

For a complete job description click here. 

The selected candidate will join USM at a historic time as we embark on our largest-ever building project, the nearly $100 million Private Public Partnership construction of a career and student center and dormitory on our Portland campus.

USM lives its Service Promise: Student Focused Every Day.We are looking for a team member who understands that promise and supports our values:Respect & Care, Integrity, Equity and Responsiveness.  

We are committed to building a culturally diverse team of leaders, faculty, and staff.We welcome applicants who are multi-lingual.Women, minorities, individuals with disabilities and veterans are encouraged to apply.

The salary for this position is $90K with a 10% employer contribution to the UMS retirement plan. The University of Southern Maine provides a highly competitive benefits package that includes: holidays, vacation and sick time; health, dental and vision insurance; life insurance; short and long term disability insurance; a tuition waiver program for employee and eligible dependents; a 403(b) retirement plan; and more.Click on our Benefits Information Summary to learn more. 



  • Bachelor’s degree in law enforcement, criminal justice, the social sciences or related field.

  • Ten years of experience in law enforcement involving progressively more complex assignments and supervisory responsibility.

  • Background and experience as well as proven skills, to generate the respect and trust of staff and senior administration, and the support of the campus community generally.

  • Certified or certifiable as a police officer in the State of Maine, with certification as a Police Chief desirable.

  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.

  • Ability to quickly adapt to a changing environment.

  • Knowledge and demonstrated skills in Law Enforcement administration, budget management, police procedures, emergency preparedness methods and processes, personnel development, strategic planning, and policy development.

  • Knowledge of public relations and community policing. Skilled in developing strong community relations and building bridges between the campus community and surrounding towns and cities.

  • Outstanding leadership ability with an appreciation for human dynamics and practical implementation skills. Must lead by example.

  • Collaborative and collegial style of leadership, with the ability and willingness to work as a member of a team, and to foster a team environment within the department.

  • Ability to work effectively within the diverse culture of the University.

  • Perform the mandatory reporting and documentation duties of a Campus Security Authority (CSA) by immediately documenting and reporting Clery Act reportable crimes of which you become aware to the designated University officials on your campus for inclusion in the campus’ Annual Security Report.

  • Attend or take online all required Campus Security Authority (CSA) training.

Other Information:

Employees in the University of Maine System are required to comply with UMS COVID protocols which currently include, but are not limited to, being vaccinated, obtaining a qualified vaccination exemption, and/or participating in regular COVID testing. Further information can be found at Together for Maine.

Materials must be submitted via "Apply for position" at the bottom of the job posting page.

You will create an applicant profile and complete an application. You will need to upload a cover letter and resume/curriculum vitae.In your cover letter or separate document, please highlight what strategies you have used to recruit, retain, and develop a diverse and talented police force. Finalists will be asked for a list of the names and contact information for three references.

All required materials must be submitted by September 25, 2022.

We are unable to consider applicants who require Visa sponsorship support. 

The successful candidate will be subject to a full background investigation; for out-of-state certified officers, this includes a psychological evaluation and polygraph required for state licensure by the Board of Trustees of the Maine Criminal Justice Academy.

The University of Southern Maine is an EEO/AA employer, and does not discriminate on the grounds of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, transgender status, gender expression, national origin, citizenship status, age, disability, genetic information or veteran’s status in employment, education, and all other programs and activities.

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