Veteran news anchor Robin Robinson is joining the Chicago Police Department as special adviser of community affairs in a shakeup designed to “rebuild public trust and promote transparency,” according to an internal memo from Supt. Eddie Johnson.
Before joining the police department, Robinson worked at Fox News 32 for nearly three decades until she left the station in 2014. Johnson said her experience will be an asset for the department.
“Utilizing the trust she has built throughout the city during her career, she will serve as a Departmental spokeswoman and be responsible for fostering stronger community faith and partnerships in Chicago’s neighborhoods,” Johnson wrote in the memo.
Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said Robinson will begin working at the department next week.
Johnson also announced he is appointing a former top cop finalist to head a new office aimed at implementing reforms. As first reported by the Chicago Tribune, Anne Kirkpartrick has been tapped to lead the department’s Bureau of Professional Standards and will serve as a liaison between the department and the U.S. Department of Justice, which is currently investigating the police department after the city released the infamous dashboard camera video of the Laquan McDonald police shooting.
Kirkpatrick formerly served as police chief in Spokane, Washington. She was one of three finalists recommended by the Chicago Police Board to replace Garry McCarthy after Emanuel fired him last year. Guglielmi said Kirkpatrick's first day at the Police Department is in July.
“It is no secret that as an agency, and as a city, we have many challenges before us,” Johnson said in the memo. “Through the combined efforts of those of us who are veterans to CPD, as well as those newest to our team, we can face these challenges head on,” Johnson said.
Read Johnson’s memo and other appointments he made below.
Sent: Monday, June 06, 2016 4:59 PM
Subject: A Message from Superintendent Johnson on Executive Appointments
As I’m sure you’ve heard me say on more than one occasion, we are at a historic moment in our agency to rebuild public trust and promote transparency with the ultimate goal of making our city safer. Through stronger partnerships between CPD and the community, we can work together to hold the right people accountable for the violence they inflict in some of Chicago’s neighborhoods.
In order to face the tasks ahead of us, I would like to announce the following changes and additions to the Command Staff:
* Anne Kirkpatrick will be joining CPD as Chief of the Bureau of Professional Standards. This newly created bureau will include Departmental education and training, compliance, research and development, and accountability. Anne’s primary responsibility will be to serve as the chief liaison with the U.S. Department of Justice to implement recommendations from the findings of their review as well as those from the Mayor’s Task Force on Police Accountability. She has an extensive and accomplished career in law enforcement, having served as the Chief of Police in Spokane, Washington and as Chief Deputy in the King’s County Sheriff’s Department in Washington state.
* Charise Valente will be joining CPD as General Counsel. Charise has more than 20 years experience in the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office with a concentration in gang, gun, and felony offenses. In 2015 she won the Crime Stoppers Award for Trial Excellence and is a two time winner of the U.S. Department of Justice Project Safe Neighborhoods Award. She will be responsible for all functions under the Office of Legal Affairs and will serve as the Department’s chief counsel.
* James Roussell will be transitioning into the role of Chief of Strategy and Operations for CPD. He has served the Department for over 30 years, having served as Chief of Staff, Commander of 024 and the Mobile Strike Force unit. Roussell also is a decorated veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps. He holds a PhD in Education and will be primarily responsible for crime control strategies as tactical and operations adviser to the Superintendent. He will also oversee the Crime Prevention and Information Center (CPIC), CompStat, and Deployment Operations Center (DOC).
* Robert Boik will be joining CPD as Chief of Staff to the Superintendent. Robert has significant municipal experience, most recently serving as Chief of Staff to the CEO of Chicago Public Schools. As Chief of Staff, he will be responsible for legislative and intergovernmental affairs, special events, serve as chief interdepartmental liaison, and oversee administration of the Superintendent’s office.
* Robin Robinson will be joining CPD as Special Adviser to the Superintendent for Community Affairs. Robin has been a familiar face in Chicago, having served as the anchor on Fox 32 News for over 25 years before joining WBBM Newsradio. Utilizing the trust she has built throughout the city during her career, she will serve as a Departmental spokesperson and be responsible for fostering stronger community faith and partnerships in Chicago’s neighborhoods.
It is no secret that as an agency, and as a city, we have many challenges before us. Through the combined efforts of those of us who are veterans to CPD, as well as those newest to our team, we can face these challenges head on. So let’s get to work.
Thank you and as always, stay safe.
Eddie T. Johnson
Superintendent of Police
Related 'Chicago Tonight' stories
March 17, 2016: After a nationwide search that lasted nearly four months, three finalists for Chicago police superintendent were named. Among them are 36-year Chicago police veteran Eugene Williams and two outsiders, Cedric Alexander and Anne Kirkpatrick.
Dec. 1, 2015: Mayor Rahm Emanuel at a press conference on Tuesday announced that he'd asked Garry McCarthy to step down as superintendent of police.
Find all "Chicago Tonight" stories on the shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald.