Members named for Wichita Citizen Review Board

Wichita (KSN photo)

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Wichita City Manager Robert Layton on Wednesday named the seven appointees and six alternates for the Citizen Review Board. (Listed below)

This has been in the works since a Wichita State University assessment of the police department was done in 2016.

The board was approved by the Wichita City Council on Oct. 10, 2017.  The following month, Layton opened up the application process to look for members to fill spots on the board.

After getting more than 100 applications from different demographics in the city, he narrowed it down to the seven board appointees and six alternates he felt were best suited for the job.

Three years ago, Santiago Quintero’s son, John Paul was killed during an officer-involved shooting.

Ever since, he has been pushing for citizens to have a voice in the discussion.

“It is important because we want to have citizens working with police and united, we need that trust,” said Quintero.

It’s a duty newly appointed board member Jay Fowler, a trial lawyer with Foulston Siefkin, is willing to tackle.

“Really this is about responsiveness to the community as far as I’m concerned, it’s about transparency, it’s about accountability and so, by getting these seven members of the community together, giving us an opportunity to listen and learn and interact with both the police and community,” said Fowler.

Others, like Odell Harris Jr., who was named as a board alternate says the dialogue between the board, community and police will prove to be a positive.

“Just be able to have those courageous conversations, and sit down have those discussions about issues we feel are important, not only to us, but to police and come to some kind of common ground if you will,” said Harris Jr.

It will provide the Wichita Police Department and council input regarding racial and biased-based policing issues. It will replace the existing City Manager Review Board. The board will also assist in policy development, public education, community outreach and other activities related to racial and other biased-based policing.

“I welcome the oversight, citizen involvement in what we are doing, looking at our policies and practices and asking those tough questions. I’m excited for this board to get up and running,” said Wichita Police Chief Gordon Ramsay.

The board members hope the collaboration will prove to be beneficial to residents and improve community relationships.

“A better Wichita and a better police relationship with the citizens,” said Fowler.  “They have family, we’ve got family, we someone that’s going to be out, holding them accountable, as much as we need to hold ourselves accountable too,” added Quintero.

The members will go through training, it includes completion of the Citizen’s Police Academy and training in state open meetings and records law.

The first meeting of the board hasn’t been set.

Board Appointees

  • Timothy L. Sims
    Planeview Church of Good in Christ
    Served on previous City Manager’s Review Board
  • Dennis Beder
    Union Rescue Mission Executive Director
    Advocate for those who suffer from disease, addition, and homelessness.
  • Jay Fowler
    Trial lawyer and partner with Foulston Siefkin
    Former president of Wichita Bar Association
  • Anabel Larumbe
    Greg Beuke Law Office receptionist
    Community advocate
  • Robert Thompson
    Cargill Logistics Manager
    Graduate of Citizens Police Academy
  • Shaun Rojas
    Kansas Leadership Center Director of Civic Engagement
    District Advisory Board Member
  • Tonja Sowder
    Syndeo Outsourcing – Vice President of Human Resources
    Board of Directors for Family Promise of Greater Wichita

Board Alternates

  • Odell Harris, Jr
    Wichita Public Schools – Behavior Specialist
    10 years pastoral experience
  • Jaime O. Lopez
    Kwik Shop HR Manager
    Intermittent Adjunct Professor University of Phoenix
  • Paul Kitchen
    High School Teacher – USD 259
    Wichita State University Department of Curriculum and Instruction Adjunct Instructor
  • Stephanie Luna
    Bed, Bath, and Beyond Associate
    Four years’ experience as a Career Transition Specialist for Flint Hills Job Corps Center
    Online instruction at Hutchinson Community College
  • Sharon M. Alislieger
    Retired librarian
    Active member of League of Women Voters
  • Janet L. Miller
    Administrative Coordinator – Wichita Area Sexual Assault Center
    Former city council member

Advisor to Citizen Review Board

  • Barry R. Grissom
    Former United States Attorney for the District of Kansas
    Experience leading government investigations

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