Mequon – Police work is a calling.
At least that is what Mequon Police Captain of Administration Scott Tyler had to say after almost 33 years with the department.
For the last several years, Tyler has been responsible for overseeing the hiring process at the department. And, as he and two other members of MPD will be leaving at the end of the month, the department is faced with filling three positions.
Fortunately, the department has hired one officer so far to fill one of the vacancies, and Chief Steve Graff said he hopes to begin the process of filling the other two positions in January.
“Normally the process would be pretty straightforward,” Tyler explained. “But the people who were on our eligibility list have found other jobs so we have had to start from scratch.”
As with many other police departments, Mequon usually has a list of qualified candidates who have been through the application and interview process. If there are no openings at the time, they are added to the eligibility list.
“It’s always a problem when you have a list of good, high-quality candidates because you know they’re not going to be around very long,” Tyler said.
Since hiring police officers can take several months, Graff said he anticipates the positions will most likely not be filled until spring or summer.
In the meantime, all three of the retirees had pearls of wisdom to offer the new recruits.
“I think it’s more of a calling than what you might consider a career path,” said Tyler. “You certainly need to have a drive to serve and a desire to want to do this job.”
“I would add to that to really think about why you got into the police of being a police officer in the first place because you should like what you do,” added Detective Andrew Fischer, who is retiring after about 31 years with the department.
Add to that an innate desire to help others, and Officer Dennis Guttmann said you have a recipe for success.
“I think it’s ultimately one of the most important things to treat people like people,” said Guttmann, who served a combination of 35 years as a reserve and on-staff officer. “It’s a two-way street and it’s a lot easier for everyone involved if we approach it that way.”