(Top photo by Bill Hoepner)
Jay Dobson, a member of the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Police Department for 23 years, has been selected as the department’s next chief following a national search.
Dobson has served as a lieutenant with the department for the past nine years and has been interim chief since the April retirement of former Chief David Sprick. Dobson will officially assume the chief role on July 1.
“Jay Dobson is widely respected for his depth of knowledge and professionalism while serving in his many integral roles in the UW-Eau Claire Police Department — as indicated by his selection last fall as the recipient of the university’s Excellence in Performance Award for University Staff,” said John Haven III, vice chancellor for finance and administration. “His contributions to the department over time have been significant, and he brings much knowledge and experience to the table to lead his team in ensuring a safe living, learning and working environment here on our campus.”
As chief of the UW-Eau Claire Police Department, Dobson will oversee 11 full-time and two part-time officers and will be responsible for the management, planning and direction of the university’s law enforcement program. He also will work closely with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies.
Dobson has had progressively increased responsibilities during his career at UW-Eau Claire. Fiscal management, delivery of departmental trainings, participation on various on- and off-campus committees, and educational presentations to community groups have been among his many departmental administrative duties. His police duties have included supervision of the department’s sergeants, detective, officers and student staff in addition to his varied law enforcement responsibilities. Dobson also has served as an adjunct instructor since 2002 in the Chippewa Valley Technical College Law Enforcement Academy.
“Jay Dobson was selected from a strong pool of final candidates for the chief position,” said Deb Newman, UW-Eau Claire associate director of Housing and Residence Life and chair of the search and screen committee for the position. “Through the interview process, he demonstrated his commitment to our students, mission, and goals and has excellent professional experiences that have prepared him well for his role as chief.”
Dobson earned a bachelor’s degree in management from UW-Eau Claire and an associate degree in criminal justice from Chippewa Valley Technical College, and he is a graduate of CVTC’s Law Enforcement Academy. He also completed the Supervision of Police Personnel training program at Northwestern University’s Center for Public Safety and is currently enrolled in the Executive Leadership Institute and the Command Leadership Institute through the FBI-Law Enforcement Executive Development Association.
“Being a Blugold for the last 23 years has had such a positive effect on my life,” Dobson said. “I take seriously the value of leading our department in building relationships with our campus and community partners, all while continuing our tradition of exceptional protective services. I look forward to the opportunities for continued contributions toward UW-Eau Claire’s mission, values, and vision.”