Chattanooga Police Department Teams With Community Leaders To Change Hiring And Promotion Of Police Officers

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Chattanooga Police Department held its first meeting on Tuesday to implement Chief Fred Fletcher’s new RESTART initiative, a community-based working group to assist with the reform of processes regarding how officers are recruited, selected and promoted.  RESTART will also provide continued oversight and guidance once the reforms are in place.

“RESTART will help us build a diverse workforce while ensuring we retain the talented officers who are currently serving Chattanooga,” said Chief Fletcher. “Community input is vital to the success of this initiative and I am proud to have leaders from all over our city participating.”

RESTART’s mission is to provide fair and equitable processes that assist the Chattanooga Police Department to:

  • Recruit a diverse workforce that represents the community
  • Engage the community and employment base
  • Select future officers
  • Transfer officers between lateral assignments
  • Advance current officers through promotions
  • Retain those currently employed through a team approach

The working group is comprised of the following community members and CPD employees:

Chris Ramsey                                      Blue Cross Blue Shield

Everlena Holmes                                 Community/Neighborhood Representative

Stacy Johnson                                      La Paz 

Gladys Pineda-Loher                           Chattanooga State

James Mapp                                        NAACP

Warren Logan, Jr.                               Urban League

Shea Jefferson                                     City of Chattanooga Human Resources

James McKissic                                   Office of Multicultural Affairs

Mike Williams                                     Chattanooga Police - Retired D/C

Sgt. Derrick Stewart                            Chattanooga Police Department

Sgt. Danny Jones                                 Chattanooga Police Department

Officer Michael Newton                     Chattanooga Police Department

Assistant Chief Danna Vaughn            Chattanooga Police Department

Officer Rob Simmons                          Chattanooga Police (IBPO)

Officer Sean O'Brien                          Chattanooga Police (FOP)

Officer Iran Meadows                        Chattanooga Police (NBPOA)

Kyle Miller                                          Chattanooga Police Department

LT. Bakari Welles                                Chattanooga Police Department

Captain Kim Noorbergen                    Chattanooga Police Department

Officer Moreland Wilson                    Chattanooga Police Department

“Rock City Lodge #22 of the Fraternal Order of Police is both humbled and enthusiastic about the opportunity to participate in RESTART” said FOP RC#22-President Sean O’Brien. “Engaging employees in establishment of ‘best practices’ and empowering them to help shape the future of the Chattanooga Police Department is certain to propel the evolution started by Chief Fletcher and his staff.”

“The diverse population in Chattanooga has undergone a significant evolution over the years,” said Gladys Pineda-Loher, director of International Community Outreach for Chattanooga State Community College. “Being a part of RESTART will contribute to multiple community wide collaborations and help to ensure CPD’s workforce reflects Chattanooga’s cultural diversity.”

During Tuesday’s inaugural meeting, Chief Fletcher stressed the importance of this initiative for the Chattanooga Police Department and outlined goals of the committee participants, stating the priorities for RESTART are to “develop fair and equitable processes for external recruitment and hiring as well as internal transfers and promotions.” 

Chief Fletcher went on to discuss the importance of mentors and  the coaching for newly hired officers, stating he was confident RESTART could help CPD find ways to successfully “coach our department back into community engagement, as well as functioning as a cohesive team.”

The RESTART working group is scheduled to meet monthly and is expected to have initial findings to report by March 31, 2015.


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