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New police chief embracing community

By: Cynthia Renaud, Special to the Telegraph
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Driving over the beautiful Rainbow Bridge is an enjoyable way to start my work day. I feel very privileged to live in such a wonderful community and to have the opportunity to serve our residents as police chief. Folsom is very different from Long Beach, where I served on the police force for two decades. With 70,000 residents, Folsom is certainly not a small city. However, it has the feel of a small town because so many attend local events, are actively involved, and take pride in the community. I see Folsom as a growing, cutting-edge city that has stayed true to its roots. I have enjoyed a very warm welcome since I was sworn in as police chief in early May. It has been a real pleasure to meet many residents, business leaders and visitors, and I greatly appreciate the helpful comments and useful information so many have provided. In my first few months on the job, I’ve done my best to close my mouth and open my ears, to listen and learn. In addition to attending many meetings and maintaining an open door policy, I have also joined many of our officers as they drive their beats. During routine patrols, they motor slowly through residential neighborhoods with their windows down, responding to questions and chatting with people along the way. I believe these beat patrols are an excellent way to maintain contact with residents. I have gained a good perspective and understanding of the Folsom Police Department as an organization. I have tremendous respect for our outstanding officers and staff. They are dedicated, resourceful and energetic. They are eager to keep learning and honing their skills and I will do all I can to assure that they have the time and resources to do so. Folsom has a low crime rate and is a very safe community. It is important to note that we all share responsibility for maintaining safety. I encourage you to take basic precautions — lock your doors, avoid leaving valuables in your cars, and report suspicious activity. Together we can help ensure that this wonderful community remains as safe as possible. I am pleased to share that when classes resume at our schools next month, we will once again have School Resource Officers (SROs) on our high school and middle school campuses. Officers James Dorris, James Moher and Chad Friedrich will help keep our campuses safe by dealing with crime issues and serving as positive role models for our youth. They will be highly visible on campus and at school events. The SRO program is a partnership between the city and Folsom Cordova Unified School District and is made possible through a federal grant. I invite community members to attend one of my upcoming coffee meetings to learn more about my vision for the police department and to share your views. The first meeting will be at La Bou Bakery and Café, 404 Blue Ravine Rd., at 8 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 7. Please RSVP to folsompolicepio@folsom.ca.us as space is limited. Cynthia Renaud is the chief of police for Folsom.