Volume 3 | June-July 2018
Message from the Executive Director
I hope this edition of our newsletter finds you enjoying your summer. As usual here in Denver, summer brings a tremendous number of events to the downtown area. While these gatherings are important to the quality of life people enjoy in our great city, I realize they also place a strain on our safety resources, including limiting days off for many of you. I want to thank you for your dedication to providing a safe environment for residents and visitors to enjoy the many benefits of Denver.

Summer has been a time of change within the Department of Public Safety. We have had several additions to our staff including Eric Williams as Deputy Director, Kelli Christensen as Communications Director, and Michael Sapp as Director of Government and Community Affairs. We also welcomed Armando Saldate as Performance Improvement Manager and Blake Christenson as a Data Analyst, and designated Sherry Jackson as Senior Advisor to the Executive Director. In addition, we modified our organizational structure to better align functions and management oversight and to enhance accountability and productivity as we move to a more data led approach to the work we perform.

Our office is not the only one embracing change. On July 9, our new Chief of Police, Paul Pazen, was sworn in by Judge Spahn in front of a full house at the City and County Building. Chief Pazen’s vision for the future of DPD is exciting and we look forward to his successful tenure. The Chief recently announced changes in the command structure and introduced the members of his leadership team during our monthly media availability on July 12. Look at the new structure here . If you haven’t already, please take time to congratulate Chief Pazen and his new team.

Congratulations are also due to all the members of the Denver Sheriff Department for accomplishing their reform implementation goals. As of July, 99 percent of the reform recommendations have been implemented and validated. The three recommendations that remain are long-term technology projects associated with the Jail Management System.

As mentioned previously, we are working towards establishing a social media presence to highlight the activities of our entire department and just launched our Twitter page @DenSafetyDept . Follow us to stay updated on DOS happenings and city-wide activities. We anticipate that our new Facebook page will launch in the coming months.
May God Bless you and keep our DOS family safe,

DPD and Denver Public Schools Featured in New PERF Report 
In an effort to ensure school safety, many law enforcement agencies have partnered with school districts to deter violence and to intervene in incidents that are beyond the control of educators. 

The Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) details the work being done collaboratively between DPD, Denver Public Schools, Denver Juvenile Probation and the Denver District Attorney’s office in their new report “ An Inclusive Approach to School Safety: Collaborative Efforts to Combat the School-to-Prison Pipeline in Denver .”

This report showcases the work being done in Denver as a model for public safety collaboration in service of students. Congratulations to all the staff working hard to ensure school safety while protecting the bright futures of our DPS students.
GRID and Safe Haven Host Prayer Rally at City Park   
Safe Haven is a faith-led initiative that supports community members who are struggling with trauma, fear or frustration due to gang violence. In partnership with GRID, Safe Haven hosted its first city-wide day of prayer in July. Approximately 125 community members attended.
Free Women’s Self Defense Classes in District 1 
It’s been another successful year for the women’s self-defense classes offered in DPD District 1. Over 400 women have participated to date and the remaining four classes are filled with long wait lists.

These classes are led by Sergeant Noel Ikeda, an 8th degree black belt in karate, and his daughter, Tristan, who is a 2nd degree black belt. They teach Krav Maga techniques to women, ages 12 to 86. Community Resource Officer Robert Gibbs manages the scheduling and organization for these immensely popular classes. 

Since the program started in 2015, approximately 1,500 women have been trained. It’s a valuable community resource and we hope to see the program expand in 2019.

To be placed on the list for future classes, please email CRO Gibbs at robert.gibbs@denvergov.org .
Community Corrections Welcomes Christopher Thomas to the Leadership Team 
Congratulations to Christopher Thomas who accepted a promotion to supervisor in Pretrial Services in July. Christopher has over 11 years of experience with the Community Corrections division. He is a 2017 graduate of the Emerging Leaders Program and embodies characteristics that make him a natural leader and valued member of the Department of Public Safety. 

“I have had the tremendous opportunity to work for the Department of Safety over the last 11+ years, specifically within the Community Correction/Pretrial Services operation,” said Thomas. “I have seen firsthand the positive effect of this program on the community we serve. I have also seen the constant growth designed to improve this service and I am honored to be in a position to continue this work and be a positive change agent for the City of Denver and the Pretrial Services family.” 
Fire Department Hosts Career Exploration Camps 
DFD hosted their annual career exploration camp in July. These free camps are open to 6th, 7th and 8th grade students and allow youth to learn, experience and recognize what a future career as a firefighter could look like. More than 70 campers participated in hands-on drills simulating fire and rescue situations.
Parents and campers alike had great feedback on the experience:

  • “This is the best summer camp, ever!” 

  • “Thank you again for hosting that marvelous camp last week for the kids. Mine had a blast, and Luka is contemplating becoming a bombero (Spanish for firefighter) when he grows up.”  

  • “I would just like to thank you and all the other volunteers for hosting another firefighter camp for (our) youth. We appreciate the time and expertise that you all have shared with the kids.”
Pretrial, Probation and Parole Supervision Week 
The week of July 15 – 21 is designated as pretrial, probation and parole supervision week. Today in America there are over five million adults on community supervision and most of these individuals are monitored by pretrial, probation and parole officers. 

Please take a moment to thank your colleagues in Community Corrections for making a difference in the lives of those who are working hard to improve their lives. 
Farewell Captain William “Bill” Nagle 
Congratulations to DPD Captain Nagle on his retirement after more than 30 years of service. Captain Nagle has served in a variety of roles within DPD over the years and was instrumental in the development and implementation of a crowd management system during the 2008 Democratic National Convention. We thank him for his service and wish him the very best!
Public Safety Honor Roll
Public Safety Cadets Achieve Scholastic Success 
In addition to working part-time for the DOS, Public Safety Cadets are enrolled as full-time college students, attending either Metro State or University of Colorado Denver. 
During each academic semester, the cadets receive special recognition for obtaining GPAs above 3.5. Over half of all our cadets received a GPA above 3.5 in the spring. Their success elevated the program’s average to 3.46 – the highest ever in the program! Congratulations to all our cadets on their hard work and best wishes for your continued academic success.  
Five Denver Police Officers Recognized for Acts of Kindness
from Citizens Appreciate Police 
On July 11, the non-profit, Citizens Appreciate Police (CAP), recognized five DPD officers who have gone above and beyond for the communities they serve. 

Officer Jerami Chavez was dispatched to a report of suspicious items in December 2017 and found a single mother who received a package filled with soiled and damaged items at a local toy drive. She was very upset as her funds were limited and those were the only gifts she had for her son. A son of a single mother himself, Officer Chavez understood how challenging the holiday could be, and using his own funds, went out and purchased gifts for both mother and son, hoping to brighten their holiday.

Officers Sean Cronin and Matt Dane were dispatched on a welfare check for an elderly gentleman. During the conversation, they found out that not only was he was suffering from severe depression and other health issues, but he is also a proud Vietnam veteran, having served as a combat medic. Before being transported, he also expressed concern about the state of his lawn. The officers decided to help and borrowed a lawn mower to cut the grass. Officer Dane also enlisted the help of a landscaper to do additional yard work, at his own expense. The officers also purchased a new flag for the gentleman. 

Officer Monica DeOssie lives across the street from an elderly woman who lost her husband in 2016. She has no family in Colorado and Officer De Ossie and her wife unofficially “adopted” the neighbor, helping her with chores and even some modifications to her home to allow her to continue living on her own. They also take her on outings and include her in all their family events. She stated in the nomination - “I don’t know what I’d do without these girls!”

These officers embody the spirit of public service and have demonstrated that to them, it’s more than just a job. We applaud their efforts to make a difference in the lives of the community they serve.
Two Participants in the Public Safety Youth Leadership Team Receive Scholarships 
The Public Safety Youth Leadership Team (PSYLT) combines youth employment, peer-centered pro-social activities and community service learning projects that encourage innovation together with developing the individual’s self-esteem, leadership, and civic skills by engaging young people in actions to positively affect the circumstances in their lives. Please join us in congratulating two PSYLT team members who were recently awarded college scholarships!
Raquel “Lala” Muniz joined the PSYLT when she was in 8th grade and has been on the team for four and half years. She graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in May and received a full ride scholarship from the Daniels Fund to Howard University in Washington D.C. 
Nizhonii Mitchell has been on the PSYLT for two years. She attends South High School and is currently preparing to begin her senior year. She just shared that she has been awarded a full ride scholarship to Juilliard School in New York beginning Fall 2019. 
DSD Eliel Villalobos Named 5281 Award Winner
Congratulations to Eliel Villalobos, who was selected as a 5281 Award Winner in the Teamwork Category. Eliel is a Senior Researcher in DSD’s Data Science Unit (DSU). His work has been a major contributor to the success and innovation exhibited by the DSU and DSD’s data driven initiatives. Beyond his exceptional technical skills, Eliel is an extraordinary, caring person that epitomizes customer service and teamwork in all that he does. Eliel was also recently selected as one of the Department of Safety’s participants in the OHR Emerging Leadership program. 
Sergeant Gene Dionido Presents at Governmental Entrepreneurial Leadership Accelerator 
Congratulations to the DSD Sergeant Dionido for presenting at the Governmental Entrepreneurial Leadership Accelerator (GELA) Pitch Night in June. Mayor Michael B. Hancock, Lt. Governor Donna Lynne and Sheriff Dept. leadership were in attendance. The GELA supports governments – which need to do more with less - to encourage innovative problem solving to pressing public policy challenges. 
Congratulations to all DOS staff who were promoted or graduated this summer!
Wellness Corner
Compassion Fatigue
Putting the safety and well-being of others first comes naturally to first responders. Only in recent years has society begun to realize the cumulative psychological toll the day-in, day-out responsibilities of the job can have on those who work in public safety. Compassion fatigue was first coined by Dr. Charles Figley, director of the Traumatology Institute at Tulane University. It is defined as an extreme state of tension and preoccupation with the suffering of others to the degree that secondary traumatic stress develops in the person providing aid. 

Compassion fatigue may be hard to spot as many of us who work in public safety are adept at internalizing daily stress while continuing to function.

Signs and symptoms of compassion fatigue include:

  • Increased isolation
  • Chronic daytime fatigue and poor quality of sleep at night
  • Emotional instability
  • Expressed or observed apathy toward work, relationships and the future
  • Use of substances or other activities in excess to numb emotions
  • Persistent rumination, preoccupation and an inflated sense of personal responsibility in the outcome of emergency response operations
  • Unexplained physical symptoms like GI distress, headaches, chronic pain or lingering colds

Our employees are our most precious resource and we care about your well-being. If you recognize these signs in yourself or others you work with, we have a variety of resources that can help. 

Our Safety Newsletter will be distributed the third week of each month. If you have something you’d like to include in a future issue, please send an email to PublicSafety@denvergov.org .  
Department of Public Safety | City and County of Denver | O: 720.913.7458 | F: 720.913.7028 | PublicSafety@denvergov.org | www.denvergov.org/safety