Forum kicks off search for the next OUPD Chief of Police


Captain Mark Gordon, one of three candidates to replace Chief of Police Samuel Lucido, speaks about his work experience and philosophy Tuesday. The other candidates will be speaking Friday, March 7 and Tuesday, March 11.

The search is on for Oakland University’s new Chief of Police. With the retirement of current Oakland University Police Department Chief of Police Samuel Lucido, a committee in charge of finding the next chief of police has narrowed things down to three candidates, each presenting in a series of open forum discussions.

The first forum was held on Tuesday, March 3 with Captain Mark Gordon of the OUPD.

Gordon has an extensive background in law enforcement. He served as a police officer for the OUPD from 1988 to 1998. For three of those ten years he worked part-time at the Oxford Michigan Police Department.

He was OUPD’s first Field Training Officer and was the Patrol Sergeant from 1998 to 2005.

Gordon became Administrative Lieutenant in 2005. Three years later he was promoted to his current title of captain. As second-in-command of the OUPD, Gordon’s duties range from labor negotiations, managing the parking system and media relations.

Gordon said he has enjoyed what he’s been able to do as Captain of the OUPD.

“It’s been a lot of work but it’s been good work,” Gordon said.

He also holds an associate degree in criminal justice, a bachelor’s degree in business management, a master’s in business administration and is a graduate of the School of Police Staff and Command.

Gordon said he is an advocate of building relationships within the community in order to better serve the campus.

“Community policing is the only way you can police a campus,” Gordon said. “Make partnerships to fight crime.”

Gordon said that in 2011 there was a spike in theft at the Hamlin and Vandenberg Residence Halls. Police found that students were leaving the doors to their dorm rooms open. OUPD partnered with housing officials and the Dean of Students to create the “lock it or lose it” campaign.

Through the partnership and campaign, there was a 50 percent decrease in theft, according to Gordon.

For the future, Gordon said he would like to have active shooter education seminars for faculty. He said he also wants to get more involved in athletics and housing, and to create lasting relationships and a safe place for students.

“We need to maintain a safe and secure environment in our residence halls,” Gordon said.

Gordon said he is the right choice for Chief of Police because of his experience at the OUPD.

“I am very well suited to where we were and where we are going,” Gordon said.

Director of University Housing Jim Zentmeyer attended the open forum and said he would be very happy if Gordon was chosen as the new Chief of Police.

Zentmeyer said he is pleased with how well housing and the OUPD have been working together, specifically with the parking on campus.

“Their office and our office have been walking hand in hand,” Zentmeyer said. Zentmeyer said the two offices have built a strong partnership based off of good communication.

“I feel very at ease with extreme disclosure between OUPD and our office,” Zentmeyer said.

At the end of the day, Zentmeyer said it’s all about respect.

“There’s mutual respect. I’ll take that to the bank any day,” Zentmeyer said.

The next open forum discussions will be held Friday, March 7 at 1:45 p.m. in the Lake Michigan room in the Oakland Center with candidate Captain Penny Fischer and Tuesday, March 11 at 1:45 p.m. in room 1031 in the Human Health Building with candidate Senior Lieutenant Paul Mascari.