Schwartze, Nelson up for Cedar Rapids Police Chief

8 years 1 month 3 weeks ago Thursday, August 02 2012 Aug 2, 2012 Thursday, August 02, 2012 8:05:00 AM CDT August 02, 2012 in News
By: Mary McGuire

CEDAR RAPIDS, Ia. - Former Joint Communications chief Zim Schwartze and a Columbia police commander are two candidates up for the chief of police position in Cedar Rapids, Ia.

Schwartze and Patrol Division Commander Brad Nelson are among eight final candidates for the job.

Schwartze was relieved of her position in May 2012, with the city and county citing budgetary restrictions. Schwartze also served with the Columbia Police Department for 21 years.

"I am honored to be a semi-finalist for the position of Chief of Police in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. I believe the Columbia Police Department has prepared me well for this position. It has been a life-long goal to become a Chief of Police and with my eligible retirement date being tomorrow, Aug. 3rd, the timing was right to apply at Cedar Rapids," said Nelson in a statement to KOMU.

The search for the new Cedar Rapids chief of police began in January with 38 applicants, according to Sgt. Chrissy Hamblin of the Cedar Rapids Police Department.

According to Hamblin, the Mercer Group Inc., a nationwide consulting firm that specializes in public sector hiring, oversaw the application process, and selected a group of 19 candidates.

The pool of applicants was narrowed down to eight by the Cedar Rapids Civil Service Commission. Schwartze is the only woman up for the job.

Interviews between the final eight and the Cedar Rapids Civil Service Commission are scheduled for Thursday.

After the interviews are completed, the Cedar Rapids City Manager will select individuals to return to Cedar Rapids to meet with citizens, attend community meetings, and hold additional interviews.

According to Hamblin, the Cedar Rapids chief of police oversees the police force of 203 sworn officers and a civilian staff of 50-65. They also oversee the Joint Communications Center and Animal Care and Control.

Cedar Rapids has a population of 125,000 people.

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