Published: April 16, 2021

Almost exactly two and a half years ago, I was offered the opportunity to lead the University of Colorado Boulder Police Department (CUPD). After 20 years of service as a municipal police officer, I decided to come to the state’s leading public research university to explore how I could make a difference on our campus and in the broader Boulder community.

CU Boulder Chief of Police Doreen Jokerst

CU Boulder Chief of Police Doreen Jokerst

The importance of this work has never been clearer to me. A lot has happened to magnify our need to engage our community and reform how CUPD serves our campus and the Boulder community. From the tragic killings of George Floyd and others while in police custody, to disturbing incidents of racism and violence toward people of color on our campus and across the country––our community and communities nationwide are calling for a transformation in how police departments operate and serve the communities we are sworn to protect, especially our communities of color.

Since a racist incident at the Engineering Center in 2019, it has been a priority for me and my department to work closely with students, faculty and staff of color as well as outside experts to determine how CUPD can become a leader in inclusive, community-centered policing practices. We want to set a standard for progressive, positive change. We also understand the need to sustain our commitment and lean into this difficult work, acknowledging the trauma and pain experienced by many community members, as well as the sustained effort needed to build stronger relationships, positive outcomes and increased trust.

I am committed to this work, and I want to share some of the steps we are taking to build a more inclusive police department that serves and protects our campus and Boulder community. We will be sharing updates in a series of stories that CU Boulder Today will begin publishing today. As you reflect on these issues, I welcome hearing your thoughts, ideas, suggestions and concerns on how we can move forward with these efforts as a campus community. I encourage you to reach out to me at to help us continue to deepen our engagement and strengthen our community together.

With gratitude,

Doreen Jokerst
Chief of Police