Public Safety

Two law enforcement veterans to lead University of Iowa public safety for now

Interim directors to take charge after delayed retirement of Scott Beckner

University of Iowa Police Chief Lucy Wiederholt (left) talks with Capt. Mark Bullock before moving an unattended strolle
University of Iowa Police Chief Lucy Wiederholt (left) talks with Capt. Mark Bullock before moving an unattended stroller Oct. 28, 2017, at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City. Wiederholt and Bullock will serve as interim co-directors of the UI Department of Public Safety following the retirement of Scott Beckner later this month. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
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IOWA CITY — University of Iowa Department of Public Safety Director Scott Beckner announced his retirement in February.

He originally planned to leave the university and move to Florida in June, but the coronavirus pandemic changed his plans. Beckner instead decided to stay on through the end of the fall semester.

What’s happened since

There won’t be another delay in Beckner’s plans to retire.

The university announced in November that Beckner will indeed retire this month. He will stay on through Dec. 31 to help with the transition.

After his departure, two interim directors will lead UI public safety — UI Police Chief Lucy Wiederholt and Capt. Mark Bullock. Wiederholt and Bullock will serve as co-directors until a permanent public safety director is in place.

“I look forward to working with Chief Wiederholt and Capt. Bullock during the transition, and am confident the department will continue to run smoothly under their leadership,” said Rod Lehnertz, senior vice president of finance and operations.

Wiederholt has served in nearly every role within public safety since being hired as a security guard in 1985. She worked as a dispatcher and police officer trainee before becoming a police officer with the department in 1988. From there, Wiederholt served as sergeant, detective sergeant, lieutenant and captain before being promoted to chief in January 2010.

Even serving as interim director is familiar to Wiederholt, who stepped into the role in 2016 when former public safety director Chuck Green retired.

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Bullock joined the UI Department of Public Safety in 2014 and quickly climbed the ranks. He was promoted to sergeant in June 2015 and captain later that year. He previously worked for the Memphis, Tenn., Police Department for six years and was awarded that department’s Medal of Honor.

Later this month, Bullock will complete the UI Tippie College of Business Executive MBA program. He also served as class president of Northwestern University’s School of Police Staff and Command.

The university said it will conduct a national search for a new public safety director during the spring semester. Officials have not yet said when they hope to have a new director in place.

Comments: (319) 339-3155; lee.hermiston@thegazette.com

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