Oakland names Howard Jordan new police chief
A 24-year veteran of the Oakland force, Jordan has been working to satisfy a federal consent judgment that has shadowed the department for more than a decade. He rose to the interim post last fall when former Chief Anthony Batts abruptly resigned, citing excessive involvement by Mayor Jean Quan in his decisions.
Batts, the former Long Beach chief, is highly regarded nationally; Jordan long has been popular by the rank and file.
He comes to the job as the Oakland Police Department faces a dwindling force -– down to 650 from a peak of just over 800 a few years ago -– rising crime and criticisms over heavy-handed tactics in the wake of the October dismantling of the Occupy encampment.
Jordan’s Wednesday appointment indicates the court monitor supports his leadership.
“Chief Jordan’s commitment to reducing crime and improving safety through constitutional policing, community policing and improving relationships with Oakland’s youth has already made a difference in our city,” Quan said Wednesday after City Administrator Deanna Santana announced the appointment.
“I have very high expectations for his leadership and his plans for reforms and refocusing the department.”
Santana on Wednesday also named Teresa Deloach Reed as Oakland fire chief. A longtime city resident, she had been serving as San Jose’s assistant fire chief. She becomes the first woman to lead the Oakland Fire Department in its 142-year history, and the first African American woman in the nation to lead a large metropolitan fire department, city officials said.
-- Lee Romney in San Francisco
Photo: Then-interim chief Howard Jordan with Mayor Jean Quan at his October swearing-in ceremony. Credit: Jeff Chiu / Associated Press