MTSU Police Chief Finalists Selected


Jason Irvin, assistant police chief of the Chattanooga Police Department

Story by Savannah Williams | Contributing Writer

Finalists for the position of Middle Tennessee State University Chief of Police have been selected and interviewed. 

The finalists for this position are:

— Jason Irvin, assistant police chief of the Chattanooga Police Department

— Terrence J. Graves, evidence storage division captain of the Metro Nashville Police Department

— Edwin J. Kaup, captain/executive officer of the Chicago Police Department’s 17th district 

One of the three is expected to be named chief in the coming months, replacing Chief Buddy Peaster who retired in the spring after 14 years in the job. This is the second search for a new police chief. Three other candidates were interviewed in the spring of 2021, but a consensus could not be reached.

The first candidate to be interviewed in the latest round was Irvin. He told the search committee on June 23 that his 25 years of experience in law enforcement has provided him with the leadership and skills to excel as MTSU’s Chief of Police.

“I have extensive training in investigation, safety, security, crime prevention and leadership,” Irvin said. “I am strongly committed to continued growth and confident I would be able to be successful at meeting and exceeding all the listed requirements for this position.”

Terrence J. Graves, evidence storage division captain of the Metro Nashville Police Department

The search committee’s interview with Capt. Graves was on July 6.

Graves is a 24-year veteran of the Metro Nashville PD and has been a resident of Murfreesboro for nine years. He told the committee that he has worked on all of his assignments with “enthusiasm and passion” throughout his career.

“Today, policing is not simply the enforcement of laws,” said Graves. “Policing is being fair, exercising discretion, understanding needs, creating partnerships, being creative, providing leadership, implementing new technologies and developing people.”

The final round of interviews was with Capt. Kaup on July 7. 

Kaup stressed the importance of community and relationships, saying that his 26 years of experience with a large police department and diverse populations makes him an ideal candidate. 

“Policing is about relationships,” Kaup said. “Continuing to build relationships through collaboration and mutual respect helps solidify the trust in a position this important. Leading with integrity, compassion and sensitivity will help foster this goal.” 

The search committee is led by Lt. Gen. Keith Huber, MTSU senior adviser for veterans and leadership initiatives. The committee members are:

Edwin J. Kaup, captain/executive officer of the Chicago Police Department’s 17th district 

— Ginger Freeman, director of MTSU alumni affairs

— Hilary Miller, director of the Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center

— Lt. Demetrius Smith, MTSU Police Department

— Tony Strode, associate director of MTSU freshman recruiting

— Lee Wade, chair of the Department of Criminal Justice Administration

— Capt. Jason Wofford, MTSU Police Department

Students, faculty, and other members of the community are encouraged to provide feedback for the search committee regarding these police chief finalists. The candidates’ resumes and interview recordings can be found at MTSU’s police chief search webpage.

Photos via Unsplash and MTSU.

To contact News Editor Matthew Giffin, email newseditor@mtsusidelines.com.

For more news, visit www.mtsusidelines.com, or follow us on Facebook at MTSU Sidelines or on Twitter at @Sidelines_News.

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