Kennesaw State’s search for a new police chief has been narrowed down to two candidates, and the search committee will choose a candidate to take the position in the next few weeks, university spokesperson Tammy DeMel said.
In August, Roger Stearns resigned as police chief amid an investigation into his leadership abilities. After his resignation, a six-member committee was formed to lead the search. The committee is led by Jeff Milsteen, chief legal affairs officer of KSU, and comprised of five employees, including the Student Government Association Vice President Igabagboleke Mobolaji.
The committee has worked since October to narrow the original pool of 30 applicants to two final candidates.
DeMel said the two final candidates are Edward Stephens and George “Ned” Watson. Stephens is the deputy chief and current acting chief of police at KSU. He graduated from KSU in 1988 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s of public administration. Stephens came to work for KSU’s police department in 1992, according to the department of public safety’s website.
Before coming to KSU, Stephens served in the Georgia Army National Guard. He is also currently the president of the Georgia Association of Firearms Instructors and a member of the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police.
Watson currently serves as the deputy chief of police at the University of West Georgia. At this position, he oversees all police activity. According to Watson’s resume, he has more than 33 years of experience in law enforcement and security operations.
Watson earned his master’s in public administration and criminal justice administration from Columbus State University and his Ph.D. in criminal justice from Capella University. Watson went to work at the UWG, climbing the ranks for 15 years before becoming deputy chief of police.
Both candidates have a longstanding history of community outreach and many years working for law enforcement. The committee will be choosing one of the candidates for the position in the coming weeks.