About This Course

According to FBI statistics, acts of crime and violence targeting places of worship occur somewhere in America every single day. To fulfill their mission, however, places of worship must be open and inviting spaces that seek to draw all people to them.

How can places of worship perform their missions while providing the most safety possible to the people who enter? This course provides practical, “nuts and bolts” information for clergy and staff of churches, temples, synagogues, and mosques. This information will give attendees the tools they need to make their places of worship safer. This course provides crucial information on realistic and sensible steps places of worship can take to improve safety and security while never losing sight of the mission of the institution. This course was designed with sensitivity to the diverse needs and resources of houses of worship of all sizes, from the small churches plant to the larger churches or cathedrals, realizing each has different needs.

Specifically, this course will explain the nature and motives for criminal offending at places of worship, and use this as a basis for developing strategies to reduce the likelihood of victimization. It will address proven techniques for protecting building structures and reducing the likelihood of victimization.

The course will describe strategies for protecting people, including staff, volunteers, attendees, and children that help develop a culture of safety. It will deal with how to plan ahead for handling a critical incident – active shooter, mental health crisis, fire, etc. – and what steps to put in your plan. Case study examples will assist with this planning.

Finally, attendees with be provided with useful tools to take with them in order to assess their own safety issues and train their own staff and volunteers in light of their unique security needs.

Who Should Attend:

Clergy, Pastors, Church Leaders and Staff: Children's Ministry, School and Daycare Staff, Security Team Leaders,

Law Enforcement Officers

First Responders

Elected Officials and Community Leaders


Chief Academic Officer, Dolan Consulting Group

| Dr. Richard Johnson

Richard R. Johnson, PhD, is a trainer and researcher with Dolan Consulting Group. He has decades of experience teaching and training on various topics associated with criminal justice, and has conducted research on a variety of topics related to crime and law enforcement. He holds a bachelor's degree in public administration and criminal justice from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA) at Indiana University, with a minor in social psychology. He possesses a master's degree in criminology from Indiana State University. He earned his doctorate in criminal justice from the School of Criminal Justice at the University of Cincinnati with concentrations in policing and criminal justice administration.

Dr. Johnson has published more than 50 articles on various criminal justice topics in academic research journals, including Justice Quarterly, Crime & Delinquency, Criminal Justice & Behavior, Journal of Criminal Justice, and Police Quarterly. He has also published more than a dozen articles in law enforcement trade journals such as the FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, Police Chief, Law & Order, National Sheriff, and Ohio Police Chief. His research has primarily focused on police-citizen interactions, justice system responses to domestic violence, and issues of police administration and management. Dr. Johnson retired as a full professor of criminal justice at the University of Toledo in 2016.

Prior to his academic career, Dr. Johnson served several years working within the criminal justice system. He served as a trooper with the Indiana State Police, working uniformed patrol in Northwest Indiana. He served as a criminal investigator with the Kane County State's Attorney Office in Illinois, where he investigated domestic violence and child sexual assault cases. He served as an intensive probation officer for felony domestic violence offenders with the Illinois 16th Judicial Circuit. Dr. Johnson is also a proud military veteran having served as a military police officer with the U.S. Air Force and Air National Guard, including active duty service after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Before that, he served as an infantry soldier and field medic in the U.S. Army and Army National Guard.