Former Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert Reflects on Chief Brown's Service

Former Dallas Tom Leppert both had nothing but praise for Dallas Police Chief David O. Brown who announced Thursday his upcoming retirement on Oct. 22.

Leppert believes Brown's strength of character and love for Dallas made him a successful chief. "The fact that he grew up in the community, knew the community, I think has been a large part of the success," he said.

Leppert was mayor when Brown was promoted to chief.

"I think we needed a great police chief, we needed someone that had character, that understood the challenges that were there, but was also willing to be decisive and take action, and he clearly has done that," said Leppert. "The results have been phenomenal, crime is down and in a lot of cities that have challenges -- police vs. community, that hasn't been the case here. I think we've had one of the best situations of police and community of any large city in the nation."

It was Brown's character, Leppert said, that helped guide this city through some of it's darkest days, after five police officers were ambushed and murdered in the heart of the Downtown Dallas.

"That character, the strength of faith, the dedication, that all came through at a time when it absolutely had to come through, and that was the dedication to the people of Dallas, that's what you saw," he said.

Leppert said he was not surprised to hear of Brown's retirement,  the two men discussed it about a year ago.

"These jobs are tough jobs, so he's been serving the people of Dallas for six and a half years. Which if you look at a police chief, that's nearly double what the average is," said Leppert. "So I think we've been very fortunate to have his service for as long as we have, and I think the Dallas city is better for it."

Leppert said this is the right time for Brown to retire.

"Dallas is probably one of the most respected police departments of anywhere, of the major cities in the United States. We owe a lot of it to him and he may as well go out on top,"  Leppert said.

Leppert also said he believes Brown will get, and has probably already gotten, all kinds of offers from all over the country -- from other police departments, to corporations, to positions on the federal level. He said it's a question of 'What does Chief Brown want to do?'

Contact Us