Will Buffalo join the historic trend of appointing a black female police chief?
In many cities across the country, African-American women lead police departments. Jacqueline Seabrooks rose through the ranks to become Chief of the Police Department in Santa Monica, California. Ulysha Renee Hall made history in Dallas, Texas last year when she became the first woman to serve as a chief of police in the history of the department.
Danielle Outlaw is Portland Oregon’s first female African-American police chief. And the past year has seen a record number of black female police chiefs in North Carolina alone. For the first time, this state had six African-American women as senior police officials. “… It’s not just happening here,” said Durham, NC Police Chief CJ Davis. “It’s happening in Dallas, Portland – it’s over. It’s happening everywhere, and I just told you, I love black girl magic! “
Locally, there is a quiet groundswell in the African American community to see that same historic magic happening here. The opportunity is at hand. But can it take place? Mayor Byron Brown recently appointed Byron C. Lockwood Acting Police Commissioner following the abrupt resignation of Commissioner Daniel Derenda. When Derenda retired he left Kimberly L. Beaty and Lockwood, both deputy commissioners. But it is well known that Lockwood, according to sources, is also due to retire soon.
In light of this, why would Brown appoint Lockwood interim commissioner? Did he dissuade him from his intention to retire? Why would he have put him on the right path to becoming the best standing cop in town against Beaty? She is a 30-year veteran in the force, who happens to be the most skilled, a graduate of the City of Buffalo School District, a 4-year graduate from Canisius College and an already highly regarded officer in the community.
The voice of the people must be taken into account. We interviewed retired law enforcement officials who worked with Beaty. They support the appointment of Beaty on the basis of a long working relationship. They know his work ethic and want to see a change in the direction of the police department.
Mayor Brown told WBEN News he plans to select the next commissioner within the department to take on the full-time role. He has 180 days to submit a name to the Common Council for confirmation. A new police commissioner must be selected before July 16.
Many concerned citizens have called to express that it would be a travesty if Deputy Commissioner Beaty was overlooked for this post. According to our sources, a number of people have contacted the mayor’s office to encourage them to consider submitting the name of Deputy Commissioner Beaty to fill the vacant position.
We strongly support the movement to see this educated, experienced and visionary woman elevated to the rank of Commissioner. (We were unable to contact Agent Beaty for this story.