Women’s History Month: Lenexa PD ahead of curve when hiring female officers
LENEXA, Kan. (KCTV) - As Women’s Appreciation Month continues, KCTV5 took a further look into the Lenexa Police Department, which is above the national average when hiring female officers.
Across the country, only 13 percent of sworn officers are women and roughly three percent are leaders in the organizations, according to a study by Stateline.
The Lenexa Police Department is above the national average. According to Lenexa Chief of Police, Dawn Layman, 20 percent of their officers are female. Of the four police chiefs in the department’s history, half have been women. Chief Layman said the diversity makes the organization stronger and helps the entire community.
“Kids and people in our internships obviously see women police officers and think to themselves ‘I can do that as well,’” Layman said. “I think that’s part of it, but really it’s just being a more diverse organization and I think as diversity enters law enforcement you’re going to see more diverse organizations overall.”
Chief Layman began service with Lenexa Police in 1993 as a patrol officer. She took over as Chief of Police in December 2020. When she first joined the department, Ellen Hanson was the Lenexa Chief of Police, serving in the role from 1991 to 2012. Chiefs Layman credited Hanson’s leadership for pushing her to become a chief.
“Very early in my career, I was kind of in awe,” Layman said. “I see all of these women who have risen to the ranks in the organizations and then said ‘I can do that’ so that was a very enlightening moment and really pushed me to do those same things in my organization.”
The Lenexa Police Department is hiring both officers and civilian positions. You can find the openings here.
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