The Position


Reporting to the chief of police and serving as an integral part of the University of Oregon Police Department (UOPD) leadership team, the director of physical security provides strategic and operational leadership to the office of physical security and oversees the comprehensive physical security policies, design standards, and plans for all locations owned and operated by the university. The director administers the daily operations and fosters the further development and evolution of a risk-based campus security program; establishes work standards and operational strategies; and plans and implements the staffing and scheduling of events for the department’s community service officers. The director manages the protection of critical infrastructure, facilities, intellectual property, physical assets, and the research enterprise; works closely with the academic, research, housing, administration, and athletic communities to mitigate their exposure to security risks; and collaborates with the division of safety and risk services (SRS) units (environmental health and safety, emergency management & continuity, risk management & insurance) and other campus partners in developing integrated campus security strategies.

The director of physical security supervises, evaluates, directs, and provides professional development opportunities for a professional staff of 23 and oversees an annual budget of approximately $3 million.


Minimum Qualifications and Professional Competencies

The position requires a bachelor’s degree (master’s preferred) or equivalent combination of education, training, and experience (law enforcement or campus-based security in higher education, medical, corporate, or facilities) and a minimum of five years of progressive administrative, supervisory, and management experience in a variety of law enforcement or security assignments. The successful candidate will display honesty, integrity, ethical standards, a strong work ethic, and a high level of emotional maturity; possess demonstrated knowledge and ability related to effectively engaging with individuals and groups representing a variety of identities, cultures, and socio-economic backgrounds; and maintain solid verbal and written communication skills, effectively presenting ideas and providing plans and procedures clearly and concisely. A proven ability to effectively, continuously, and discretely work with confidential and potentially sensitive information; strong coalition-building skills that promote effective collaboration; and ensuring the availability of professional development opportunities for all staff are expected. Adult CPR with first aid and automatic external defibrillation (AED) certification is required within 60 days of employment, and certified protection professional (CPP) or similar security certification is required within 48 months of employment.

Preferred Qualifications

Preferred qualifications include seven years of progressive security or law enforcement experience, the NCS4 certified sport security professional designation, and the ASIS certified protection professional designation. Additional preferred qualifications include demonstrated experience in developing and implementing a risk-based security program; applying best practices for safety and security programs, particularly those outlined in the ASIS chief security officer guidelines; leading a results-focused team of security personnel; administering and financing enterprise-wide physical security systems including, but not limited to, access control, video surveillance, alarm systems, and panic buttons; developing and implementing strategic initiatives, both forward-looking and in response to emerging trends; and directing facilities security personnel and programming, preferably in an academic setting that included large athletic venues, museums, libraries, and research units.

In addition to the minimum academic and experiential requirements indicated above, the following are desired characteristics, skills, actions, strengths, and abilities noted from discussions with campus stakeholders.

  • Breadth and depth of knowledge around safety, security, and law enforcement, with particular emphasis given to a higher education or other community-focused environments
  • Strong leadership and organizational development abilities that promote and inspire excellence, offer opportunities for professional development, and foster unity and teamwork throughout the office of physical security and UOPD
  • Solid technology skills, with implementation experience and an exceptional understanding of the value and profound effects of technology and social media on safety and security in today’s world
  • Political savvy, diplomacy, and tact, with a keen understanding of how security decisions affect internal and external stakeholders in different ways
  • An outstanding verbal and written communicator with the ability to effectively explain information to various audiences at different knowledge levels in ways that are easily understood
  • A solid commitment to cultivating collaborative relationships and building partnerships across all levels of the institution and the surrounding community
  • Substantial budget and finance skills, with the ability to prioritize financial decisions on safety and security
  • A solid combination of strategic vision and operational competency, with the ability to multitask effectively across the two domains
  • A systems-focused thinker who can assess needs on a global scale and integrate them effectively in tandem with other campus entities
  • Cultural competency and cultural humility, including demonstrated experience successfully working with diversity, inclusion, and social justice initiatives and effectively integrating diversity, equity, and inclusion into departmental recruitment, training initiatives, programs, and services
  • A student-focused approach to the role, prioritizing the safety, security, health, and well-being of the University of Oregon (UO) student population, as well as an understanding of the evolving security needs and expectations of the current and future generation of students
  • Deep knowledge of best practices and current trends in safety and security, with the innovative spirit and flexibility to creatively think outside the box
  • Solid problem-solving skills with the ability to determine needs, address issues, manage change processes effectively, and create new possibilities in growing the physical security of the UO
  • The ability to encourage and develop trust, celebrate successes, and persuade others to follow their lead
  • Familiarity working within a unionized environment
  • Robust assessment and project management skills, with an orientation to detail and the ability to make data-driven decisions, set expectations, devise and fully implement plans, analyze the results, and propose further changes and updates based on these outcomes
  • The ability to actively listen to all sides of an issue, ask knowledgeable questions, adapt to significant changes on the spur of the moment without being reactive, conduct difficult conversations when pertinent, remain “cool under pressure” no matter the situation, accept input from all levels of the institutional community, and then make complex, well-informed decisions around the physical security needs of the campus
  • A holistic approach to safety and security to include mental health training, an understanding of student development, and a willingness to collaborate with mental health and student affairs professionals when necessary
  • Experience managing and directing security for large-scale events, including athletic contests, concerts, and events involving high-profile individuals
  • Approachability, availability, and an open-door policy
  • Integrity, character, fairness, humility, compassion, and a strong sense of empathy for the UO community
  • A customer-service mindset that prioritizes high-end responsiveness and concern for others at all times and strives to over-deliver on all commitments
  • Enthusiasm for the role, excitement for the possibilities, and a positive attitude that encourages an upbeat working environment


With Chief Jason Wade assuming his permanent role in June 2022, the University of Oregon Police Department has comprehensively revised and reimagined the institution’s security practices. The director of physical security will be responsible for integrating the electronic and physical security efforts across the various University of Oregon campuses. These physical security initiatives will be a crucial part of an integrated operations center (IOC) that will serve as a focal point for the security and safety efforts at all levels of the campus community. The previous director of physical security resigned in 2022 to pursue another professional opportunity, and UO has partnered with Spelman Johnson to fill this crucial role.


The new director of physical security must possess a broad and deep understanding of national best practices concerning comprehensive safety and security operations, modern technology, and organizational and staff development in a public environment such as the UO. The director should be an aspiring or experienced leader capable of managing complex situations and staffing, committed to customer service at the highest level, possessing a deep understanding of current issues in community engagement, and equipped to contribute strategically and operationally at a large research institution.

The UO is committed to identifying a competent and dedicated individual who can promote, uplift, and develop the physical security team, develop and evolve departmental processes and procedures, and work proactively in tandem with the student body, administration, faculty, local community, other units of the UOPD, and other surrounding law enforcement agencies to progressively, innovatively, and comprehensively move the program to the next level. The following were identified as possible opportunities, priorities, and challenges facing the new director of physical security at the University of Oregon.

  • The director of physical security is coming on board with UOPD at an exciting time, with several intriguing initiatives on the horizon. Margolis Healy and Associates, a professional services firm specializing in safety, security, emergency preparedness, and regulatory compliance, has been contracted to conduct a comprehensive third-party review of the full scope of UOPD policies, procedures, and operations. By the time of the director’s hire and arrival on campus, the full results of this review should be complete and available. This should provide a virtual “road map” to guide them as they begin moving the program forward and establishing a new strategic plan. Additionally, the current security operations center (SOC) is being revamped and renovated to become the new integrated operations center, a centralized one-stop shop for the totality of the security and safety needs and issues on the UO campus. And since this is a newly-imagined position, the director has the incredible opportunity to build the department from the ground up with a new vision that allows them to place their own positive, professional imprint on the physical security department, the UOPD, and the UO campus for years to come.
  • With the corps of community service officers (CSOs) under their purview, the director must prioritize community engagement at all times. Further building this philosophy will allow the CSOs to be seen more as proactive, responsive, and functional campus community members and enable them to integrate fully with the sworn and armed officers of the UOPD. The director and the CSOs should be visible, accessible, and interactive with the student body and other parts of the institution, consistently networking with the faculty, staff, and administration, regularly involving the campus in safety and security endeavors, and generally providing a positive representation of the mission of the UOPD.
  • It will be essential that the director of physical security commit to a comprehensive culture of collaboration and partnering and clear and transparent communication within the department and across campus. The University of Oregon is committed to building strong, healthy, and mutually supportive relationships as a foundation of the campus culture. Strong collaboration is necessary for all endeavors to ensure success in this role. The director and all of the UOPD touch a vast number of entities, including students, faculty, staff, administration, departments, and community members, so it will be crucial that this individual quickly reach out across each of these areas to reconfirm previous relationships and continuously build new, mutually beneficial partnerships that foster ongoing positive interactions. It will significantly benefit the director to conduct a listening tour early in their tenure to gather as much input as possible from the UO community. These connections are essential to assess the real needs of constituents, provide exceptional programs and services for the campus, and ensure a cutting-edge approach.
  • The director must prioritize getting to know the community service officers and other departmental staff as individuals, learn their specific needs and career goals, ascertain and understand the various responsibilities they perform and roles they play, be available and approachable, provide comprehensive professional development opportunities and support for all, and oversee the development of a strong, unified team. The director must emphasize increasing the knowledge and skills of best practices in higher education security and must always maintain high morale, promote confidence, and develop trust across the department. The director should also be willing to strategically organize the department to maximize strengths, encourage unity and participatory management, and forge a shared vision among all staff in the department.
  • The successful candidate must quickly become familiar with all areas of the physical security portfolio to develop a comprehensive list of priorities. The director must focus a great deal of time upon arrival on ascertaining the hot-button priorities of the campus, discovering the internal needs of the staff and the department, attending campus events as necessary, and beginning the process of reaching out and establishing themselves as the “expert” on all things related to security. The director must learn the culture of the department, the UOPD, and the broader campus and work with the staff and other administration members to implement new processes, procedures, programs, and services in a systematic well-planned manner.
  • The University of Oregon and the Eugene area have developed a brand name and have become destinations for hosting large-scale national and international events. On six Saturdays during the fall, Eugene becomes the largest public gathering in the state of Oregon, and it has also been the site of the US Olympic trials since 2008. In the summer of 2022, the UO hosted the World Athletics Championships, a global track and field event. The security needs associated with these events are extensive, so physical security and the rest of the UOPD are integral to supporting and maintaining safety and public well-being before, during, and after the events occur.
  • Diversity, equity, inclusion, and social justice are core values of the University of Oregon community, and the director of physical security should be a leader in supporting, understanding, embracing, and nurturing these concepts, both internally to the department and externally into the campus and surrounding Eugene area. There are many underrepresented populations throughout the UO, and the entire UOPD must be a model for maintaining a strong sense of equity and an unbiased, supportive environment. With many marginalized communities represented at the UO and given the national conversation around policing and racial inequalities, the director will be expected to engage with, empathize, and devise collaborative solutions for the underrepresented groups on campus and beyond.
  • The University of Oregon’s geographic location, in the western part of the state on the heralded I-5 Pacific Highway midway between Portland and Medford, makes it ideal for all walks of life. On-campus stakeholders reiterated that they liked working at the university, are very supportive of each other, enjoy the vibrant environment of the UO, feel an excellent sense of collegiality, and believe that there are many opportunities for the next director of physical security to make a tremendous difference in a great many ways. Additionally, the surrounding communities contain a robust assortment of restaurants and food options, many cultural and arts-related events, opportunities for recreation and sports, and abundant year-round outdoor activities that appeal to a wide array of interests.


At an appropriate interval after joining the University of Oregon, the items listed below will initially define success for the new director of physical security.

  • The director has reviewed and assessed the findings of the Margolis Healy review in detail and has begun the implementation of these findings into new operational and strategic plans.
  • The new integrated operations center upgrade has been completed, and the IOC is functioning as the one-stop shop for security on campus.
  • The community service officers are working effectively together as a team, morale and staff satisfaction are high, trust and buy-in are being established, and professional development opportunities are abundant throughout the department.
  • The director is viewed across campus as the face of the department, the expert on physical security, and a student-focused administrator.
  • The listening tour has been completed, strong and collaborative relationships have been established across campus and the community, and the director is viewed as a valued, trusted, and respected partner and resource with whom to work.
  • Communication from the department is timely, frequent, and transparent, both internally and to campus constituents.
  • The director has conducted a full assessment of the current policies and procedures related to physical security on campus and has begun developing and implementing an updated set that integrates with the current needs of the campus.
  • New technology plans are being devised, and the department is viewed as innovative, creative, and cutting-edge.

Institution & Location


The University of Oregon Police Department, part of the safety and risk services division, is a community-oriented, trust-based policing agency serving the University of Oregon campus and off-campus properties. UOPD is committed to excellence in campus law enforcement and is dedicated to the people, culture, traditions, and diversity of the community. UOPD plays an integral role in the university community by providing a safe, secure, and welcoming environment, with a mission to foster a climate that encourages a free, open, and civil exchange of ideas supporting the educational, research, and public service goals of the institution. UOPD recognizes and promotes the value of multiculturalism and inclusiveness consistent with a spirit of responsible citizenship within an international community.

More about UOPD

UOPD Organizational Chart

Safety and Risk Services Organizational Chart


Jason Wade – Chief of Police

Jason Wade, a UOPD police officer since 2014, brings over 25 years of experience and a deep commitment to community policing to the role of chief. As police captain, Wade led the department’s accreditation process, making the UOPD the first campus police department in Oregon to be accredited by the Oregon Accreditation Alliance.

He also developed the first UOPD Cadet Academy to advance the department’s goal of creating and sustaining a diverse and inclusive workforce. In addition, UOPD trained and brought on ten unarmed community service officers in the past year. The officers broaden the services and connection to campus.

Wade, who embraces the UOPD’s new approaches, said he wants to develop meaningful connections with underserved communities and equally engage with all community members with compassion and empathy. “Police officers, CSOs, and staff of the department are truly public servants working in the best interest of our community,” Wade said. “The UOPD’s authority comes from our community’s trust and approval of how we conduct ourselves.”

Wade received a bachelor of science degree in criminal justice administration from Columbia Southern University and an associate of arts degree in criminal justice from Kaplan University and possesses numerous executive leadership certifications and training from national and regional agencies.


Nestled in the lush Willamette Valley, within an easy drive to the Pacific Ocean and the Cascade Mountains, the University of Oregon is renowned for its research prowess and commitment to teaching. Founded in 1876, UO enrolls 23,202 students from all fifty states and 94 countries. Designated as a Tier 1 national public research university comprised of nine schools and colleges offering more than 300 undergraduate programs, the University of Oregon is one of just two institutions in the Pacific Northwest selected for membership in the prestigious Association of American Universities. US News & World Report ranks the UO among its top 100 national universities and Oregon’s #1 public university.

Mission, purpose, vision, and values

Strategic Framework (Strategic Plan)


The division of equity and inclusion (DEI) puts equity and inclusion into practice so that the University of Oregon can benefit from the excellence of diversity. By partnering with faculty, students, staff, alums, and community members and groups, the members of DEI work collaboratively to strengthen individual capacity and community bonds to advance the academic mission of the university. DEI’s efforts are facilitated through the IDEAL framework, which is comprised of the following five pillars.

  • Inclusion: Cultivating a more welcoming and respectful environment for all
  • Diversity: Developing and implementing equitable strategies for recruiting, retaining, and advancing a cadre of students, faculty, and staff with a wide variety of backgrounds, talents, perspectives, and experiences
  • Evaluation: Using assessment and measurement strategies to evaluate its processes in meeting the university’s goal of equity and inclusion
  • Achievement: Ensuring that its policies, processes, and practices provide access for all to achieve their personal best
  • Leadership: Develop, nurture, and coach leadership to facilitate inclusive environments and the resources for success


Total enrollment: 23,202

Undergraduate: 19,568

Graduate: 3,634

Oregon residents: 52%

Out-of-state residents: 38%

International students: 10%

Student-to-teacher ratio: 18 to 1


Patrick C. Phillips – Interim President

Patrick C. Phillips is the interim president of the University of Oregon. He was appointed to the position on August 20, 2022, by the UO Board of Trustees. As interim president, Phillips is the institution’s chief executive officer and is focused on advancing the UO’s mission through enhancing academic and research excellence, supporting student access and success, improving inclusion and diversity, and providing an outstanding campus experience.

A noted biologist, Phillips has a long history at the UO, beginning in 2000, when he became a faculty member in the department of biology. As a professor, he has conducted extensive research on understanding how genetic information contained within DNA is translated into the complex suite of features that characterize all organisms. His work uses the model, “nematode C. elegans,” and its relatives to research the molecular genetic basis of natural variation in traits such as body size, reproductive success, and behavior, as well as seeking novel approaches to understand the biological basis of aging and to identify genes and environmental interventions that increase health span and longevity.

President’s Cabinet


The UO provides excellent health insurance benefits, as well as dental and vision, with a very small portion paid by the employee; there are also tuition benefits for the employee or eligible dependents, and the UO picks up both the employer and employee’s share of the Public Employees Retirement System (PERS) contribution. Other highlights include:

  • Life Insurance
  • Flexible spending accounts
  • Wellness programs

Below are some helpful links regarding benefits.

For more information:

Application & Nomination

Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. To apply for this position please click on the Apply button, complete the brief application process, and upload your resume and position-specific cover letter. Nominations for this position and questions about the status of the search may be emailed to J. Scott Derrick at Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895 or email

 Expected Salary Range: $109,000-$120,000; candidates with advanced skills and experience may be considered for a starting salary above this range.

 Visit the University of Oregon website at

 The University of Oregon is an equal-opportunity, affirmative-action institution committed to cultural diversity and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. This publication will be made available in accessible formats upon request. Accommodations for people with disabilities will be provided if requested in advance.

 The term “diversity” can be defined in a number of different ways. The UO looks at it broadly and inclusively, encompassing race, ethnicity, disability, thought, culture, religion, sexual orientation, gender, and economics. The UO seeks to promote further diversity among its faculty, staff, and student body through active recruitment and intentional retention.