A Leadership Succession Plan

Eden Prairie News Commentary, May 18th, 2006
By Dan Carlson

Following is a letter I gave to City Manager Scott Neal last week. I also had the opportunity to share it with the Police Department at our annual awards ceremony on May 11, 2006.

May 8, 2006

Dear Scott,

It has been almost four years since you provided me with the opportunity to serve as Police Chief for the City of Eden Prairie. At that time I put my plans to pursue a career in the ministry on hold with the promise that I would keep you fully informed as my post-law enforcement career plans evolved.

Recent developments in my ministry plans, including my appointment as Chaplain of the Minnesota State Chiefs of Police Association and an opportunity to pursue candidacy as an ordained Lutheran Pastor have given new clarity to my future. These opportunities, combined with the police department’s solid leadership succession plan and depth of leadership have led me to make a definitive retirement plan.

I will be retiring from my position as Police Chief with the City of Eden Prairie effective January 26, 2007.

Thank you for allowing me the great honor and privilege to serve as Police Chief for the City of Eden Prairie. I look for ward to participating in the transition process over the next several months.

Sincerely,

Dan Carlson
Police Chief
City of Eden Prairie

At some point I would like to share more detail regarding the wonderful opportunities I have experienced as police chief and the specifics of my developing post-law enforcement career. However, today I would like to focus on “the police department’s solid leadership succession plan and depth of leadership” that I mentioned in my letter to the City Manager.

The Eden Prairie Police Department has a long history of internal leadership succession and I am proud to say the tradition continues with Deputy Police Chief Rob Reynolds being named as my successor. Rob has 21 years of progressive and diverse work experience with the department. We have been planning and facilitating an internal succession for several years and Rob emerged as the right person to fill the job quite awhile ago.

But the depth and quality of active and potential leadership in this department goes much further. The Office of the Police Chief is also made up of four Lieutenants, whose total time in service with Eden Prairie adds up to over 84 years of progressive and diverse work experience. Lt. Mike Bosacker is currently on loan to the Minnesota Joint Analysis Center, a state Homeland Security initiative, and will return to Eden Prairie in January 2007. Lt. Tracy Luke is Commander of our Patrol Operations Division, Lt. Jim DeMann commands our Investigative Operations Division and our newest Commander, Lt. Jim Morrow, is in charge of our Support Operations Division. Additionally, high quality leadership is evident throughout every unit and level of the department and is too extensive to mention here.

I am excited about the opportunities that await this organization as it moves to its next era of leadership. I am also excited to participate in the upcoming transition process as it provides me with ample time to pass on my experiences and knowledge gained, as well as allowing the new leadership to strategize their future. I also look forward to having time in the coming months to adjust to this significant change in my personal life and the impact it will have on the organization.