Southwest Tennessee Community College

For Immediate Release

Date September 17, 2008

For More Information: Brenda Rayner, 901-333-4247


Veteran Law Enforcement Officer Appointed Director of Police Services/Public Safety at Southwest

James H. Bolden has been promoted to director of police services/public safety at Southwest Tennessee Community College. Bolden came to Southwest in June of this year as associate director of police services/public safety after having served 32 years in law enforcement. “I believe in service – serving the people, serving the public. Coming here to Southwest affords me the opportunity to continue my life’s work of being of service,” said Bolden.

Bolden’s first professional law enforcement opportunity came as a patrolman with the Memphis Police Department in 1968. Eight years later, he was promoted to sergeant and assigned to the criminal investigation division. Bolden rose through the ranks as lieutenant, captain, commander, inspector, chief inspector and chief of the MPD Training Academy where he revolutionized training methods for all law enforcement personnel. He retired in 1997 then returned in 2000 as deputy director of police services and was later appointed as director of police services for the City of Memphis in 2003. Bolden served as director of Homeland Security for District 11 and worked for Crichton College before coming to Southwest.

As chief of public safety at Southwest, Bolden feels that a unified ‘community concept’ will best strengthen the effectiveness of public safety for the college. “I see the Southwest community as almost like a city within itself. … I would like to see a community-based public safety initiative at the college in which the students, faculty and staff are able to interchange ideas and work together.”

In order to provide for public safety at all of Southwest’s campuses and centers, Bolden’s goals are to: increase the use of the emergency alert texting by the students, faculty and staff; utilize community campus safety technicians (criminal justice students who have been selected to work with/mirror professional campus safety personnel); utilize technology to create a centralized public safety command center; and create behavior intervention teams to deal with and prevent campus incidents.

The greatest asset Bolden feels that he brings to Southwest is his many years of experience. “I’ve had experience at the municipal level, I’ve worked for the county, and I’ve worked for the state of Tennessee and for the federal government,” said Bolden. “In the aftermath of 9/11, I’ve had the opportunity to assist in crafting a national strategy for America that deals with homeland security,” he continued.

A Memphis State University graduate with a Bachelor of Arts degree in criminal justice, Bolden continued his studies first at the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) National Academy, and later at the illustrious Senior Management Institute for Police at Boston University. He also received valuable training under the guidance of the Israeli National Police Force through the world renowned Georgia International Law Enforcement Exchange Program. He co-founded the Afro-American Police Association in 1973.

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Cutline: James H. Bolden