Residents, community members invited to submit questions
to help choose Somerville’s next Chief of Police
SOMERVILLE – The four finalists for Somerville Chief of Police—Somerville Deputy Chief Michael Cabral; Somerville Deputy Chief David Fallon;
Manchester, NH Chief David Mara; and Hamden, CT Chief Thomas Wydra—will answer questions submitted by the community at a public hearing scheduled for Wednesday, June 25, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Aldermanic Chamber at City Hall, 93 Highland Ave.
To submit a question for consideration, visit http://www.somervillema.gov/askthechief and enter your question. Those without Internet access may submit written questions at the Somerville Public Library (Main Branch at 79 Highland Ave., East Branch at 115 Broadway, and West Branch at 40 College Ave); the Public Safety Building at 220 Washington St.; or the welcome desk at City Hall. The Police Chief Selection Committee will review the submitted questions and select the best questions to pose to the police chief finalists at the hearing.
Director of the Somerville Office of Commissions, Sonja Darai, will serve as the moderator for the hearing. Each finalist will have the opportunity to give a five-minute opening statement, and two minutes to answer each question. Interpreters for Spanish, Portuguese, Haitian Creole and American Sign Language speakers will be available at the hearing, which will be broadcast live on City TV (channel 22 on Comcast and channel 13 on RCN). Rebroadcasts of the hearing will include closed captioning.
Experience and education of the four finalists (full resumes are available online) include:
• Michael Cabral: Current Somerville Police Deputy Chief of Support. Formerly acting chief, deputy chief of operations, captain, lieutenant, sergeant and officer with Somerville Police, and officer with Dennis Police. Cabral holds a master’s degree in criminal justice from Anna Maria College and a bachelor’s degree in law enforcement from Western New England College.
• David Fallon: Current Somerville Police Deputy Chief of Operations. Formerly captain, lieutenant, sergeant and patrolman with Somerville Police, and security police with U.S. Air Force. Fallon holds a master’s degree in criminal justice from Western New England College, a bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology from University of Massachusetts-Boston, and an associate degree in applied science from Community College of the Air Force.
• David Mara: Current Manchester, NH Police Chief. Formerly administrative captain, prosecutor, patrol sergeant and officer with Manchester Police, and prosecuting attorney with the City of Manchester’s Office of the City Solicitor. Mara holds a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Northeastern University and a juris doctor from New England School of Law.
• Thomas Wydra: Current Hamden, CT Police Chief. Formerly deputy chief of police, lieutenant, sergeant, state auto theft task force investigator, street crime unit investigator, and patrol officer with Hamden Police. Wydra holds a bachelor’s degree in public safety administration from Charter Oak State College.
After the public hearing, the Police Chief Search Committee will submit a final written assessment of each candidate to Mayor Joseph A. Curtatone for consideration. Mayor Curtatone will meet with each of the finalists in the two days following the public hearing and may narrow down the finalists and conduct site visits prior to hiring a new police chief.
The City selected Waters Consulting Group through a request for proposals in December to assist in the search for a new police chief. Working with the Police Chief Search Committee, Waters Consulting representative Chuck Rohre interviewed City officials and over 40 constituent group representatives, held a public hearing and conducted a citywide survey that had more than 200 responses to obtain input on the qualities and characteristics desired of the next police chief. By the April deadline, 37 candidates applied for the position, which the Search Committee narrowed down to the four finalists.
Former Somerville Police Chief Thomas Pasquarello announced in late 2013 that he would step down in order to care for a family member. Charlie Femino has been serving as Acting Chief of Police since Dec. 1, 2013.