Chief Diane Hobley-Burney, who is Chief of Police for the City of Fort Pierce Police Department, was invited by the Port St. Lucie Business Women to talk about the challenges she has faced in her law enforcement career and share the solutions she found to successfully overcome these challenges at their July 6 meeting held at Tutto Fresco in St. Lucie West.
Chief Hobley-Burney, who had 27 years of law enforcement experience in the Tampa Police Department, earned the distinction of a highly respected leader. She came to Fort Pierce in 2015 and is the first female Chief of Police for the City of Fort Pierce.
The Chief views herself as a change agent. She stresses that our mission should be to do our best, regardless of challenges. We won’t please everyone. “Stay your course,” said Chief Hobley-Burney, “as long as you know you are doing the right thing. When you try to accomplish something, you will get resistance. Always do what’s right and you will find a way.”
Chief Hobley-Burney focused on rebuilding the Fort Pierce Police Department. She believes community-oriented policing is the key to building and growing relationships with the citizens of Fort Pierce. She has invited residents to attend events, meet officers and neighbors, and share ideas about neighborhood safety. “I want the community to see me and our police officers as people, too.”
She has led a number of successful crime reduction initiatives since arriving in Fort Pierce, the most notable being the “Front Porch Roll Call Program” where police officers meet with people on their front porches, at their businesses, or other places in their neighborhoods. As a result of her efforts, the city’s crime rate has been reduced by more than 20 percent.
Chief Hobley-Burney shared a story with the Business Women. A friend’s 8- year-old daughter cried when Hillary Clinton wasn’t elected because she really wanted a woman to be president of the United States. The Chief was taken aback and honored when this child then said she knows she can be a police chief since Hobley-Burney holds that position. This made her realize and value herself as a role model, too.
The Port St. Lucie Business Women is a professional organization dedicated to promoting the interests of business women and serving our community in an effective way. For more information visit www.pslbw.com. “Like” their Facebook page for updates about events, programs and community involvement.