Chief Jacob Molitor

Chief Jacob Molitor joined the Meskwaki Nation Police Department (MNPD) of Tama, Iowa in 2012 and was promoted to Chief of Police in May 2019. He is proud to be the only Chief of Police in the department’s history who started as a patrol officer and was promoted from within. Chief Molitor followed in his uncle’s footsteps by entering into the public safety profession. His uncle James “Jim” Chan served a combined 34 dedicated years in three different agencies: the Pope County Sheriff’s Office (MN), Minnesota State Patrol, and the Glenwood Police Department (MN). Chief Molitor obtained his Associate in Applied Science Degree in Law Enforcement from Alexandria Technical & Community College in Minnesota and his Bachelor of Science Degree in Law Enforcement from Minnesota State University, Mankato. While employed with the Meskwaki Nation Police Department, he graduated with his Master of Science Degree in Public Safety Executive Leadership from Saint Cloud State University, located in his hometown in Minnesota. Upon his promotion to Chief of Police, his top priorities were to implement department cultural trainings; provide bi-annual education on the “use of force” to council members and others within tribal operations; improve partnerships with surrounding agencies; and increase communication, transparency, and accountability for the public. The department collects numerous statistics to best allocate resources; monitor employee performance and expectations; and measure outcomes as a method to increase public trust and confidence. In February 2020, Chief Molitor’s team became the first known police department to collect de-escalation statistics. The agency collects those statistics using their own defined metrics. Their process of documenting and recognizing de-escalated situations assists with community support, officer safety alerts, and the praise of officers. The department maintains trust with the community by going the extra mile to do the little things such as vehicle unlocks, jump-starts, and checking in on the elderly. His team provides these services in accordance with their community policing and problem solving approach. Chief Molitor has been consistently supported by the Meskwaki Nation and has been able to advance his leadership skills through training and experience. He has attended leadership training such as International Association of Chiefs of Police conferences, the United States Indian Police Academy Chief of Police Command School through the Bureau of Indian Affairs-Office of Justice Services, FBI Law Enforcement Executive Development training, and the Department of Homeland Security Leadership Academy. Additionally, Chief Molitor is a member of the Iowa Police Chiefs Association and the Iowa Juvenile Justice Advisory Council. Chief Molitor’s agency prides itself on being innovative, respectful, supportive, and well trained. If he had to choose, the most important training sought by Chief Molitor would be interviewing, de-escalation, crisis intervention, and leadership related training because they revolve around effective communication. He believes that our most important assets are our people and that we need to invest in their futures. Highlighting positive community interactions and building the reputation of his agency are very important to Chief Molitor. In 2020, he implemented an “officer of the year” award program to reward officers and increase productivity. Chief Molitor regularly seeks and applies for grant opportunities to improve operations and service to the community. He introduced brand identity to the police department through a grant purchase of a large outdoor-lighted sign and electronic message board located by the road outside the department. Chief Molitor understands the importance for agencies around the country to reflect the demographic of the communities that they serve. To reach this goal, he believes that we must maintain our hiring standards, but appeal to the youth and concentrate on our efforts in schools. He feels that it must be a priority to devote time to youth by attending formal programs, lunch, recess, and beyond. These efforts will inspire the next generation of public safety professionals. “It is a privilege to serve the proud Meskwaki Nation as their Chief of Police,” stated Chief Molitor. “It is an honor to serve as the Chairman of the Small & Rural Law Enforcement Executive’s Association. My entire team and supporters deserve credit for this incredible accomplishment. I am proud to represent this noble profession and am eager to seek opportunities to learn and develop.”