By Theresa Evans
Rider hosted three finalist candidates who are interested in filling the position of Director of Public Safety and presented themselves to the community at open forums in early November.
The position opened following Vickie Weaver’s retirement during the spring semester.
Debbie Stasolla, vice president for strategic initiatives and planning, expects to announce the new director of public safety this week.
In Weaver’s absence, Public Safety Captain Jim Flatley has served as acting director of public safety, according to Stasolla.
The Rider community was encouraged to attend each forum and participate in a Q&A session with the candidates.
The committee responsible for the hiring process of the Director of Public Safety “wanted to give the Rider community a chance to participate in the process,” said Stasolla.
Stasolla sent out a campus-wide email informing the community of the forums and provided the community with the resume and cover letters of each candidate.
“The director will have a vision for Public Safety at a residential institution like Rider and work collaboratively with local law enforcement and offices across the University including, among others— Residence Life, Student Affairs, Facilities and Auxiliary Services,” wrote Stasolla.
Ana Arocho-Zsak presented on Nov. 1, Edward Spangler presented on Nov. 7 and James Waldon presented on Nov. 8.
Stasolla believed that the candidates engaged well with the Rider community at the open forums and did “an effective job answering questions.”
The community was also asked to fill out a survey after each forum to offer feedback on each candidate.
“We are certainly looking for [someone with] experience in Public Safety in a higher education setting,” said Stasolla. “Law enforcement or military background is also helpful. We’re looking for someone who understands the context of Public Safety on a college campus, particularly, working with students, educational component of that work in enforcing our [Student Code of Social Conduct] and emphasis on community policing and community engagement is very important to us.”
The search committee completed the final interviews as of Nov. 12 and expect for a new Director of Public Safety to begin early January.
“The search committee and I are especially appreciative of those people who took time out of their very busy schedules to attend the open forums, participate and engage with us,” said Stasolla.