Police Commissioner Makes the Grade
Edward F. Davis '90 G
Lowell, MA native, Ed Davis‘90G, presides as the 40th Police Commissioner of the City of Boston. He was sworn in by Mayor Thomas Menino on December 4, 2006. Prior to becoming Commissioner of the Boston Police Department, Mr. Davis served as the Superintendent of Police in Lowell, Massachusetts for 12 years. He began his career as a patrol officer in Lowell in 1978 and rose through the ranks before becoming Superintendent in 1994. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the National Leadership Award (2002) from the Police Executive Research Forum.
Commissioner Davis was also the recipient of the prestigious NIJ Pickett Fellowship and attended the John F. Kennedy School of Government’s Program for Senior Government Executives at Harvard University. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from New Hampshire College and a Master’s degree in Criminal Justice from Anna Maria College.
Commissioner Davis has served on the PERF board of directors and was a founding member and first President of the Massachusetts Major City Chiefs Association.
In the recent past, Commissioner Davis shared his thoughts on his career and law enforcement in general. Here is a summary of his thoughts.
Commissioner Davis, why did you enter the criminal justice field?
“I have always been interested in working in law enforcement, particularly for the local police force, since I can remember. My father was a police officer in Lowell where I grew up and I was able to gain first-hand knowledge of what his work entailed. I started my career as a police officer and really enjoyed my role in protecting local neighborhoods. I liked being out of the office, walking the streets and interacting with the public. I still do.”
Why did you select Anna Maria College to continue your education?
“The Catholic Mission of the College was a major draw for me. I grew up in the Catholic education system and always believed it delivered a superior product. AMC was also one of the first Colleges in the area offering criminal justice programs for individuals with full-time careers. Once I started the program I became impressed with the instructors and the overall content of the classes.”
How has AMC helped your career?
“The professors were great and understood what their students needed to learn. Many had been or were currently working as practitioners in the field. I remember one of my instructors, Jim Brick, a former Assistant District Attorney, who made a tremendous impact on my professional life. Through his support and knowledge, I became involved in researching DNA, which in the late 80’s was just coming into the forefront of law enforcement. At the time, DNA evidence was being used effectively in London and as a result of my studies at AMC, I was able to become knowledgeable about important this cutting-edge program. It really has made a significant difference.”
What issues do you see facing Criminal Justice Professionals in the future?
“From where I sit right now, budgeting will continue to be a major concern. Large metro areas will have to carefully evaluate what works and what doesn’t work so that the limited funds police forces are receiving can be used to implement programs that are the most effective. For example, I think large communities need to build-up community policing programs and pull-back on other initiatives that have less impact on maintaining the safety of our communities, which of course is our first priority.”