UAPD Reporting Structure

April 10, 2023

Dear Students and Colleagues,

As I shared two weeks ago, the University received from security experts at PAX Group, LLC their Review of the University of Arizona’s Safety and Security Environment final report, the recommendations of which we already have begun implementing.

Creating the position of Chief Safety Officer is a major first step in a new approach to coordinating safety initiatives across our community, and Steve Patterson, a 25-year FBI veteran, has agreed to serve in the role in an interim capacity, ahead of a national search.

To further provide the University of Arizona Police Department (UAPD) with appropriate specialized support and to best align with our security and safety objectives, I have made the decision to move the reporting line of the Department from Business Affairs to the new Chief Safety Officer. This strategic move will elevate campus safety operations to report directly to me, enabling us to better coordinate and streamline our safety measures.

This change will allow all of us to build on the strong foundation UAPD has created in partnership with Senior Vice President for Business Affairs and CFO, Lisa Rulney, and other colleagues in Business Affairs.

Ms. Rulney, Chief Paula Balafas, and I met with UAPD earlier today and shared our confidence that this shift will result in enhanced safety for our community – our primary goal. We also shared our appreciation for the continued dedication and professionalism of the officers and staff of UAPD as they work hard every day to keep our campus safe and secure.

As we implement the recommendations of the PAX Group report and take other steps focused on safety and security, I plan to hold biweekly briefings to provide updates on our progress. Additionally, we will create a website where you will be able to track implementation of each recommendation. More information on the briefings and site will be shared as it is available.

Thank you,

Robert C. Robbins, M.D.

The University of Arizona 

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