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A New Safety Leader

The University of Dayton has named Rodney Chatman, a veteran campus law enforcement leader as executive director of public safety and chief of police.

Chatman has served with the University of Cincinnati's department of public safety since 2005 and is currently a captain. He starts Jan. 19 and will succeed Bruce Burt, who is retiring next month after 14 years of service.

Bill Fischer, vice president for student development, said Chatman has significant experience in engaging with diverse parts of a campus community.

"His relationship-building skills are just exceptional,” Fischer said. "He has consistently demonstrated his ability to work and interact with students very well. We're excited to have him come on board."

Patty Alvarez, assistant dean of students and director of multicultural affairs who headed the selection committee, said Chatman has an excellent reputation in the campus law enforcement community, a commitment to diversity and inclusion and understands the University's Marianist values.

"He really has everything we were looking for — a broad range of law enforcement skills and experiences along with an ability to build partnerships and connections both on and off campus," she said.

Chatman said he was drawn to the University's sense of family and engaged, values-driven campus community.

"What first attracted me to the position was the University's job description. They were seeking an energetic, collaborative individual to lead a cutting-edge public safety department focused on community policing," Chatman said. "When I came to campus, I found people who are truly about making the University of Dayton a better place, people who I could be family with."

Chatman said he's especially looking forward to meeting students and getting to know them and their concerns.

"My approach is that we must be in partnership with the students and I want to be fully engaged in building that partnership," he said.

With a 26-year career in law enforcement, Chatman has worked as a patrol officer, dispatcher, community and school resource officer and supervisor of a multi-jurisdictional SWAT team, among other responsibilities. Prior to joining the University of Cincinnati, he served on the police forces of St. Bernard and Silverton, both suburbs of Cincinnati.

In his current position as captain, he has administrative responsibility for nearly 100 police officers, security officers and emergency communications personnel and manages internal affairs, training and community engagement.

Chatman is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Cincinnati and has developed curricula in crisis negotiations, family violence, police effectiveness and criminal investigation in the criminal justice and humanities programs.

He earned master's and bachelor's degrees in criminal justice from the University of Cincinnati and frequently speaks at law enforcement conferences on crisis intervention, incivility in the workplace and emergency preparedness.


News and Communications Staff