Big changes happening in Rapid City

Local News

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — Some big changes are happening in Rapid City. Earlier this month Fire Chief Rod Seals retired from his position. Just a week later, Chief of Police Karl Jegeris turned in his badge. Interim leaders have been appointed to both positions as the city looks for permanent replacements.

It’s not every year two leaders in the community retire around the same time. Nick Stroot is the Human Resource Director for Rapid City and says they have a selection process that will take about 60 days.

“What we are doing now is we are soliciting for internal candidates. We decided at appropriate rank, where we would consider internal candidates since we’ve put out a request for letters of interest and resumes from those internal candidates,” Stroot said.

Interim Chief, Don Hedrick, has served 18 years at the Rapid City Police Department in several positions, including detective, patrol sergeant, patrol lieutenant, special operations lieutenant, captain of the department’s support services division, and assistant chief.

“Working a lot of different areas of the department helps with decision making because you have an understanding of doing the job yourself firsthand and definitely plays a role when you want to make positive changes, that you have that experience under your belt,” Chief Hedrick said.

Rapid City Mayor Steve Allender appointed Hedrick interim chief last week on Friday. Allender said in a press release that Hedrick is well-respected by citizens and leaders in the community. Allender says that he has the utmost confidence in Hedrick during his transition.

“One thing that we will continue to be a focus, now and probably forever more is transparency and I think it’s so important, especially right now with police departments being open and sharing what we can,” Chief Hedrick said.

The Human Resource Department with the City says the selection process will include a review of applicants and interviews by a panel of citizens and community leaders.

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