Mayor McLean names new police chief

Posted at 2:19 PM, Jun 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-01 19:11:45-04

BOISE, Idaho — Boise Mayor Lauren McLean announced Monday she is naming Ryan Lee as Chief of the Boise Police Department, effective July 1, 2020. After a nationwide search, Lee was chosen as the best fit for Boise with its long history of community safety. The hiring process included multiple panel interviews with professional law enforcement teams, two community stakeholder panels and a Boise Police Department panel.

“We are excited to welcome Chief Lee to Boise. After conducting a nationwide search for the right fit, we are confident in his abilities to lead the Boise Police Department. His leadership is welcome now more than ever during this challenging time. His commitment to public safety and approach to accountability, transparency, and community engagement fit so well with what residents expect of their police department,” said Mayor Lauren McLean. “We know he will be a great, inspirational leader to the team of police professionals Boise is lucky to have.”

Lee’s selection is due to be confirmed on June 9 at the 6 p.m. City Council meeting. The City of Boise extends its thanks and deep appreciation to Acting Chief Ron Winegar, who stepped in as Acting Chief after Interim Chief Masterson retired. Lee comes to Boise with experience from Portland, Oregon for around 20 years, with ranks ranging from Officer to Assistant Chief of Police. He wants to build on the relationship the Boise Police Department has with the community, using his experience in community outreach, collaboration and leadership.

“It is a true honor to be selected to be the next Chief of the Boise Police Department,” said Ryan Lee. “Boise is a vibrant and wonderful city and my family and I are very excited to move here, build new relationships, and start a new chapter in our lives. I am eager to meet the people in the department and our community members to learn and share ideas for what can be strengthened and what we should continue. I look forward to working collaboratively with the people of Boise to come up with impactful solutions for the community and public safety.”

In Portland, Lee was active in mentoring at-risk youth and served on the boards of multiple non-profit agencies. He advocates for accountability and transparency, as well as highly collaborative teamwork, with respect for both fellow officers and the public.

According to a press release, Lee is a veteran of the United States Coast Guard and has a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice with an emphasis on law enforcement and investigations from California State at Sacramento. He has also earned a Master of Criminal Justice degree from Boston University. His service as a national subject matter expert in policing large-scale public events, and his background in homeland security, terrorism and intelligence balances well with a long history of studying human rights and building police-community relationships.

“The City Council was pleased to participate in an extensive vetting process for a new police chief. We are excited to have the selection of Ryan Lee as Chief of the Boise Police Department before us for consent. The process determined that he is prepared to carry forward with our strong commitment to citizen centric community policing and we believe his experience positions him to expand on that commitment at this pivotal time,” said City Council President Elaine Clegg. “I look forward to supporting his work with our officers and our community.”