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Sanders names appointments for Fair Housing Commission, Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Training

Little Rock pastor, Hot Springs lawman appointed by David Showers | January 21, 2023 at 8:29 a.m.
Hot Springs Police Chief Chris Chapmond is shown in his office in July 2022. - File photo by Donald Cross of The Sentinel-Record

Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Friday announced the appointment of outgoing Hot Springs Police Chief Chris Chapmond as director of the Arkansas Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Training.

Sanders also named Iverson Jackson, a pastor and retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel, as executive director of the state's Fair Housing Commission.

"I have made it clear that under my leadership, our brave law enforcement officials will always have the training and resources they need to keep Arkansans safe -- and I am proud to announce that Hot Springs Chief of Police Chris Chapmond will help me accomplish this as director of the Arkansas Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Training," Sanders said in a news release.

"With more than 26 years of law enforcement experience, Chapmond will bring critical knowledge and expertise to ensure that our officers are always supported."

Chapmond's appointment comes after he tendered his resignation Jan. 12. His last day as Hot Springs' police chief is Jan. 27.

The new opportunity came as a surprise.

"I was literally approached a week ago about the position," Chapmond said Friday. "I had some praying and thinking to do about it. I'm very humbled to be asked to serve in this position.

"I'm excited. It's a great opportunity. I'll be able to impact not only this generation of law enforcement but help determine how we train and hold our officers accountable moving forward."

Chapmond will oversee the office that recommends minimum hiring and training standards to a panel of state and local law enforcement leaders. Standards adopted by the commission must be met before an applicant can become a certified law enforcement officer. A division of the Department of Public Safety, the commission also runs the state's three law enforcement training academies in East Camden, North Little Rock and Springdale.

"I'll work closely with the secretary of the Department of Public Safety and other members of law enforcement to ensure our standards are the best," Chapmond said.

The commission also rules on petitions to decertify officers accused of misconduct, unethical behavior or other wrongdoing.

Chapmond said he'll be responsible for about 50 employees. According to the state transparency website, the current Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Training director's salary is $108,305. The city of Hot Springs' human resources department said Friday that Chapmond's base salary as police chief is $121,451.

Chapmond will succeed J.R. Hankins, the director of the agency who was appointed by former Gov. Asa Hutchinson in August.

Chapmond said he'll continue residing in Hot Springs and commute to Little Rock.

He joined the Hot Springs department in 1996 where he worked as a patrol officer, corporal, sergeant, lieutenant, captain and assistant police chief. He served as an operator, team leader, instructor and incident commander for the department SWAT team for 11 years, according to the news release.

In 2018, Chapmond was hired as chief of the Bluffton, S.C., police department. He returned to Hot Springs after being selected for chief from a field of 30 candidates spanning more than a dozen states.

Jackson, Sanders' pick to head the state's Fair Housing Commission, serves as the senior pastor of Zoe Bible Church in Little Rock and as a constituent and governmental relations liaison in the Secretary of State's Office. In 2008, he retired from the U.S. Army Reserves after 25 years of service, according to the news release.

"Iverson -- a pastor and retired Army colonel -- is a strong leader who shares my compassionate vision to empower Arkansans with greater opportunity and prosperity, making him a clear choice for the position," Sanders said in a news release. "I am confident that he will work with Inspector General Allison Bragg to promote fair housing access for all Arkansans."

The Fair Housing Commission is a state agency that works alongside the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to enforce fair housing rules and regulations.

Jackson is a national vice president of the Ministers Taking a S.T.A.N.D (Staying True to America's National Destiny) and holds the chair of the African American Coalition of Arkansas of the Republican Party of Arkansas. He also serves on the Southern Arkansas University Foundation Board and several other boards in his community.

His salary as a constituent and governmental relations liaison is listed as $62,000 on the Arkansas transparency website.

Jackson will succeed Ateca Foreman, outgoing director of the commission. Hutchinson and Elizabeth Smith, former secretary of the Department of Inspector General Secretary, jointly appointed Foreman in 2021. Foreman's salary is $129,603, according to the transparency website.

Jackson's radio show "The Life of God" is broadcast throughout Central Arkansas on weekdays. He received an undergraduate degree from Southern Arkansas University and a master's degree from Webster University.

Information for this article was contributed by Will Langhorne of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.

Print Headline: Sanders taps housing, police training chiefs


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