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Editorial: City had good candidates for police chief

Sitting in the room Monday night as the Rosemount City Council interviewed its three police chief finalists, one thing quickly became clear: Rosemount was going to hire an excellent chief.

All three of the finalists -- Apple Valley captain Michael Marben, longtime Rosemount lieutenant Jewel Ericson and Burnsville captain Eric Werner, the council's eventual choice -- were impressive in their answers to council members and their ideas of what an effective police department should look like.

While each had his own style, all three had some similar ideas. They talked about building connections with Rosemount residents, a community-focused style of policing that should serve the city well as it continues to grow.

Werner comes with an impressive resume. In Burnsville, he oversaw a $12.5 million budget that city administrator Dwight Johnson pointed out Monday is larger than the city of Rosemount's general fund budget. He has gone through a lot of additional schooling -- at the FBI Academy and elsewhere -- since he took his first police job 24 years ago in a suburb of Chicago.

Based on what we saw Monday, we are comfortable the city council has made a good choice. Others who have been involved in the process seem to think so as well. Of the 11 people who participated in two panels that interviewed the three finalists, Werner was the top choice of 10.

Ericson certainly has a wealth of experience in Rosemount. This is the only city he has served in his 27-year career as a police officer. He said Monday he has never applied for a job outside of Rosemount, and he doesn't intend to. He plans to be here until he is ready to retire.

That is commendable, and we're sure Werner will appreciate Ericson's expertise as he makes the transition to Rosemount.

We look forward to good things ahead.