A special awards ceremony took place honoring members of the Bourne Police Department who recently completed a special leadership training program developed under the auspices of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The program is referred to as FBI-LEEDA, which stands for Law Enforcement Executive Development Associates. Members of the Bourne department took part in the development program’s week-long sessions. Last Friday, June 18, the members were honored with the FBI-LEEDA Trilogy Award during a ceremony held at the Bourne police headquarters on Armory Road in Buzzards Bay.

The award is earned after a police officer has completed the three levels of FBI–LEEDA training, which are Supervisor Leadership, Command Leadership and Executive Leadership.

Eight members of the Bourne department received Trilogy Award certification last Friday. The ninth member of the command staff will complete Trilogy training in July, which will earn the department the honor of being an FBI-LEEDA Trilogy agency.

The FBI-LEEDA website states its mission, in part, is to “advance the science and art of law enforcement leadership.” The training is also designed to encourage the exchange of information to “improve law enforcement management practices through training, education and networking among police professionals across the United States and beyond.”

The sessions focus on supervisor, command and executive leadership in policing. Command staff with the Bourne department visited areas across the country where they met with law enforcement professionals from different walks of life and with different viewpoints with respect to 21st-century policing.

Bourne Director of Police Services Chief Paul Shastany noted that he was hired by the Town of Bourne on January 25. Shortly after arrival, Chief Shastany said, he evaluated various areas of the department and quickly identified the need for leadership training. The training provided through FBI-LEEDA, he said, provides department staff with a far-reaching view of policing that can be applied on a local level.

“What this means is that they can use the national trends, they can see globally what’s happening, because it affects us here,” the chief said.

Chief Shastany noted that the police department and the town demographics in Ferguson, Missouri, are the same as in Bourne. In August 2014, riots broke out in Ferguson following the shooting of a Black man by a white police officer. Officers at all levels of the department, he said, need to know how to navigate through all manner of social issues and to understand the expectations of people in the community.

“They need to be aware, when there’s a protest down in the rotary, that their actions matter on a world stage,” he said.

Last week’s course was held at the Bourne Police Department. Anne Kirkpatrick was the instructor. Ms. Kirkpatrick has spent 38 years in policing, starting her career in her native Memphis, Tennessee, in 1982. She has been with eight different agencies and served as chief of police in four of them, including Oakland, California, and Spokane, Washington.

Ms. Kirkpatrick complimented the administration of the Town of Bourne for providing police department staff with the leadership training that LEEDA offers. She said the program sprung out of courses given to agents at the FBI’s headquarters in Quantico, Virginia. She said investing in the police department staff “is a statement of value” on the part of town officials and an understanding of the direction policing is taking for the future.

“We’re going through huge transitions, paradigm shifts, culture changes,” she said. “To change cultures, you also have to change thinking, and to invest in training gives these men and women opportunities to look at their future and how we’re going to need to change. There’s a real value in the return of investment.”

Ms. Kirkpatrick said the training provides a broader view of policing for all levels of the department, from patrolmen to sergeants to lieutenants to chiefs. The sessions, she said, are designed to enlighten everyone as to why certain decisions, which impact the entire organization, have to be made by people higher up in the command staff.

“It gives the person an understanding of why the chief has to do the decisions this way,” she said. “It’s kind of like the teenager who becomes a parent, and they say, ‘You know, I never realized why my parent was doing as they were doing. Now I’m a parent, I get it.’”

Bourne Police Lieutenant Brandon M. Esip was among the department members who received the FBI-LEEDA Trilogy certification last week. Lt. Esip credited the training with providing the Bourne staff with the opportunity to visit different states and “get their viewpoint of how law enforcement is in those different parts of the country.”

“Not just our own local view of it,” he said. “It’s great to have someone’s differing view and different mindsets.”

Lt. Esip said the LEEDA training will also be instrumental in preparing department staff for leadership roles in the future.

“We have great people here, we have a lot of great personnel,” he said, “and this will make sure that they are the ones to continue to lead this department in the future.”

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