Doing the Right Thing: Contributing to the Advancement of the Police Profession

If there was ever a time when law enforcement needed a champion, it would be now. In these times when the profession is under fire from criticisms, calls for reform, demands for restructuring, and direct threats to officers’ lives, law enforcement relies on organizations like the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) to serve as a voice of reason, a representative for police, and, when appropriate, a catalyst for change.

Well-known football coach Vince Lombardi once said, “The achievements of an organization are the results of the combined effort of each individual.” Since 1893, the IACP has been serving the needs of the law enforcement community to, among other things, bring about recruitment and training of qualified persons and encourage adherence of all police officers to high professional standards of performance and conduct. To this end, a unique committee system has evolved, with multiple committees comprised of IACP members that address root and evolving issues in law enforcement. Today, law enforcement leaders and officers face issues that test the very essence of their souls as they look for solutions and common ground between police and the communities they serve. The committee structure’s greatest strength has proven to be the willingness on the part of IACP members to lend their individual and collective experience, expertise, and forward thinking to issues relevant to the profession and to offer IACP leadership the benefit of their research and examination of issues that are relevant to current or evolving issues. IACP leadership has, in turn, shown great courage in providing the validation and structure to bring many of these often controversial issues before its membership in the form of best practices, model policies, published reviews, and formal testimony.