Course Description

Serving as a chief of police is one of the most honorable and rewarding roles in law enforcement, but it can also be one of the most challenging for the men and women who accept the call.

This webinar provides you with the opportunity to spend time with a police chief veteran who successfully traveled down the road to chief four separate times. Chief Harry P. Dolan served more than 32 years in law enforcement, with 25 of those years as a chief. He successfully competed for chief appointments at four separate agencies, from a small state agency, to a small city, to a medium-sized city, to a major metropolitan city. In this webinar, Chief Dolan walks us through the critical steps to securing a career as a chief.

  • What does it take to become a Police Chief: Do I really have what it takes?
  • Critical facts to consider BEFORE deciding to apply for the job: Starting and ending with you and your family intact
  • Understanding the various types of selection processes: Surviving the “Hurdles”
  • Navigating city hall, community, and police department political interests: Avoiding “Land Mines”
  • What is the Mayor/City Manager really looking for in their next Police Chief: What factors influence the decision to look inside vs. outside
  • How much homework should I do: Getting a firm grasp of current issues and events vs. “I have a plan for you”
  • Looks like you are getting the job offer: How should I proceed with negotiating a political appointment, contract or civil service offer?
  • Waiting to start the new job: Do’s and don’ts before arriving at the new job
  • Introducing the “New Chief”: Recommendations regarding your first steps from the 25-Year School of Hard Knocks


CEO, Dolan Consulting Group

| Chief Harry Dolan (Ret.)

Harry P. Dolan is a 32-year police veteran who served as a Chief of Police since 1987. As one of the nation's most experienced police chiefs, he brings 25 years of public safety executive experience to Dolan Consulting Group. He retired in October 2012 as Chief of Police of the Raleigh (N.C.) Police Department, an agency comprised of nearly 900 employees in America's 42nd largest city.

Chief Dolan began his law enforcement career in 1980 as a deputy sheriff in Asheville, North Carolina and served there until early 1982, when he joined the Raleigh Police Department, where he served as a patrol officer. In 1987, he was appointed Chief of Police for the N.C. Department of Human Resources Police Department, located in Black Mountain. He served as Chief of Police in Lumberton, N.C. from 1992 until 1998, when he became Chief of Police of the Grand Rapids, Michigan Police Department. He served in that capacity for nearly ten years before becoming Chief of the Raleigh Police Department in September 2007. As Chief, he raised the bar at every organization and left each in a better position to both achieve and sustain success.

Harry Dolan has lectured throughout the United States and has trained thousands of public safety professionals in the fields of Leadership & Management, Communications Skills, and Community Policing. Past participants have consistently described Chief Dolan's presentations as career changing, characterized by his sense of humor and unique ability to maintain participants' interest throughout his training sessions. Chief Dolan's demonstrated ability to connect with his clientele and deliver insightful instruction all with uncompromising principles will be of tremendous value in the private sector.

Chief Dolan's unbridled passion to achieve service-excellence is a driving force behind Dolan Consulting Group. He is a graduate of Western Carolina University and holds a Master's Degree in Organizational Leadership and Management from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke.

Course curriculum

  • 1

    Before You Start

    • Consent Questions

    • Download Course Materials

  • 2


    • How to Become a Police Chief | Hour 1

    • How to Become a Police Chief | Hour 2