Governor appoints UMSL professor for cabinet post
Daniel Isom, the Endowed Professor of Police and the Community at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, was appointed by Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon Wednesday to lead the state’s public safety unit.
Isom, who joined UMSL in January 2013 after more than 24 years in law enforcement, will serve as the Missouri director of public safety beginning Sept. 1.
“I hope to use my experience in policing and my relationship with UMSL to help Missouri become a national leader in safety, security and trust for all citizens,” Isom said.
In his new position, Isom will oversee the National Guard, emergency management system and police officer training and standards.
Isom said he plans on pulling ideas and recommendations from his colleagues in the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice at UMSL.
“Our department is filled with some of the greatest minds in the field,” he said, noting that the department’s doctoral program is ranked fourth in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.
Isom will continue to teach two classes at UMSL this semester, but plans to take a leave of absence in December. He will keep office hours at both UMSL and Highway Patrol Headquarters in Weldon Springs, Mo.
Prior to joining UMSL, he served as the St. Louis Metropolitan Police chief. He began his career as a patrol officer with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department in 1988 and rose through the ranks while working in practically every unit, including mobile reserve, police academy, internal affairs, advisory and community outreach. He was named chief of the department in 2008.
Isom earned his bachelor’s (1994), master’s (2003) and doctoral (2008) degrees in criminology and criminal justice from UMSL.
He will replace outgoing Public Safety Director Jerry Lee, who is retiring after almost three years in the position.
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