Senators raise questions after public safety director resigns

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JEFFERSON CITY - After Daniel Isom announced his resignation as director of the Department of Public Safety, one senator raised questions as to why Isom resigned.

In a press release earlier Wednesday evening, Isom said he was leaving his position to pursue his passion as a teacher of Criminology and Criminal Justice at the University of Missouri-Saint Louis. State Senator Maria Chapelle-Nadal, D-St. Louis County, believes it could be for another reason. 

"Is it because he wanted to go back to teaching, or is it the same institutional racism we have in the state government?" Chapelle-Nadal said. "I just think there is something more than just a simple resignation." 


Daniel Isom was only the second black member of Governor Jay Nixon's cabinet. He was appointed as the director in August after the unrest in Ferguson. In a news release earlier today, State Senator Jamilah Nasheed, D-St. Louis, said Ferguson could have played a role in his resignation. 

"I am extremely disappointed that Dr. Isom must not have been given the leeway to make reforms necessary after the unrest in Ferguson," Nasheed said. 

Later at the capitol, Nasheed told KOMU 8: "I spent a lot of political capital getting Isom confirmed, and this is how it ends. Unbelievable." 

The governor announced Peter Lyskowski would serve as the acting director of the department until a permanent replacement is found. Lyskowski is currently the Deputy Chief of Staff for the governor. 

Isom's last day will be on March 2.