topics Press UNT Dallas, MMHPI Partner to Advance Caruth Police Institute as Leader in Police Training & Research

UNT Dallas, MMHPI Partner to Advance Caruth Police Institute as Leader in Police Training & Research

The University of North Texas at Dallas and Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute (MMHPI) have united to transform the Caruth Police Institute (CPI) into one of the premier police training, policy analysis, technical assistance and research  organizations in Texas and nationally.

This engagement brings together leadership and resources from these two organizations, as well as from police departments around the state and nonprofit community leaders to formulate solutions to the most complex and pressing issues facing police departments today, such as increasing police workforce, reducing police suicides and addressing the opioid crisis on the front lines.

This reinvigorated CPI will launch with a media event at 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 17 at the Welcome Center in the Student Center on the UNT Dallas campus. CPI has been a part of UNT Dallas since its inception in 2009.

“By bringing MMHPI’s abundant skill sets to CPI, we can increase the reach and scope of our training, add for the first time a powerful research component, raise the visibility of CPI in the community and become one of the most important police training institutes in America. It is all possible,” UNT Dallas President Bob Mong said. “I want to thank the Communities Foundation of Texas and the Caruth Foundation for their continued support of CPI and this new engagement with MMHPI.”

Central to strengthening CPI’s priorities of improving public safety through police officer training, policy analysis, and applied police science research, is the creation of an 18-person Executive Advisory Board bolstered by the inclusion of a dozen police chiefs from departments across Texas and led by Board Chair, Irving Chief of Police Jeff Spivey.

The advisory board also includes Dallas Police Chief U. Renee Hall and Assistant Chief David Pughes, Arlington Police Chief Will Johnson, Garland Police Chief Jeff Bryan, Carrollton Police Chief Derrick Miller, plus police chiefs from Sherman, Willow Park, Austin, Abilene, Odessa, Rockport and Dallas County Community College District. “I am excited about the opportunity to work with a renowned group of practitioners and academics as we revitalize and relaunch the Caruth Police Institute to prepare the next generation of law enforcement professionals,” Spivey said.

The police chiefs will play a critical role in guiding strategic planning to enhance CPI’s foundation through assessing the training program curriculum, developing a policy analysis and technical assistance division and establishing a research plan. Under CPI’s new structure, MMHPI will provide executive leadership, headed by interim executive director B.J. Wagner, and will work in close collaboration with UNT Dallas President Mong, and UNT Dallas Provost Betty Stewart.

The Caruth Police Institute represents a unique, academic-practitioner model in police science, and serves as a resource for law enforcement officers all across Texas. The new collaboration with the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute enhances CPI’s existing expertise in police policy and adds to its ability to conduct research, evaluate programs and improve police operations, which will allow CPI to grow into one of the finest law enforcement policy institutes in Texas and the country. I am honored to lead the Caruth Police Institute during this period of revitalization.

BJ Wagner, Interim Executive Director, Caruth Police Institute at The University of North Texas at Dallas

CPI receives ongoing operational funding from Communities Foundation of Texas (CFT). CPI was established with substantial seed funding from the W.W. Caruth, Jr. Fund at CFT. “We are extremely excited and supportive of this new partnership between UNT Dallas and MMHPI,” said Dave Scullin, President and CEO of Communities Foundation of Texas. “Working together, the two institutions will increase the capacity of the Caruth Police Institute to play an even more significant role in helping to address the modern challenges facing law enforcement professionals in North Texas and beyond.”

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