Tulsa Mayor Announces New Police Chief, Major Wendell Franklin

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum revealed Tulsa's new police chief on Wednesday. 

Wednesday, January 22nd 2020, 1:07 pm

By: News On 6

Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum revealed his choice for Tulsa's new police chief on Wednesday. 

Major Wendell Franklin will replace Chuck Jordan as the Tulsa Police Department chief. Franklin was among four candidates that spoke before the public last week.

"I am overwhelmed. I am trying to take it all in. Yesterday with him telling me, it was surreal," said Franklin.

Bynum praised Franklin for his strong community policing successes and his tough, but fair leadership.

"He is unique in having commanded front-line officers in each of the departments, in three field divisions as a captain in the Mingo valley division, as the division commander over the Riverside division and later the Gilcrease division," said Bynum.

Related Story: Tulsa Mayor Announces Final 4 Police Chief Candidates 

Franklin said while he is nervous about taking over, he knows that he has a strong support structure to lean on to help him succeed.

"I am fearful but because I don't want to mess up. I know what the expectations are and I know I won’t be able to meet everyone’s expectations, but you know I want to move our department forward," said Franklin.

Franklin spoke about creating a more transparent department and installing a new records management system by 2021.

"Our officers that are actually out there on patrol being engaged with the community, knowing the community, and knowing specific people in the community," said Franklin. "We've have to be innovative. We've have to always be ever-changing. We are always morphing and that's what I plan to do." 

Franklin has served more than 23 years at TPD and will be the City's 40th Chief of Police. He's the department's first African-American police chief.

Franklin said he started with the department back in January 1997 and has worked his way up through the ranks. He said he wants to use data to address crime and be more transparent with the public.

He also talked about the importance of community policing.

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