Date(s) - 24/08/2012
12:00 am - 1:00 pm
Keynote Mayor Jerry Sanders
Sanders ascended the police department ranks, becoming one of the youngest police chiefs in the city’s history after 20 years on the force. He expanded community-oriented policing and earned a reputation as one of the nation’s most progressive and innovative law-enforcement leaders, with crime falling to a 25-year low during his time as chief. Still in place today, the community policing model has helped further reduce crime in San Diego, which last year saw homicides drop to the lowest level since 1968, and per-capita crime at its lowest since the Kennedy administration.
In 1999, Sanders retired from the police force to take on a new challenge as head of the United Way of San Diego.
“The local chapter was in trouble,” Sanders said. “Fundraising was down and administrative costs were up. I saw an opportunity to help turn around an organization that had been a great community partner.”
At the United Way, Sanders slashed the organization’s costs and increased fundraising by 20 percent.
In 2002, Sanders was tapped to chair the board of local chapter of the American Red Cross after a scandal over the use of fire-relief funds led to the removal of the local chapter’s CEO and several board members. He increased financial transparency at the chapter and oversaw major staff changes, helping to restore the nonprofit’s credibility.
Soon, civic leaders were again looking to Sanders to lead an organization out of crisis. This time, it was the city of San Diego, which was rocked by a pension-underfunding scheme that put the city’s bond disclosures under Securities & Exchange Commission scrutiny and caused the city’s bond rating to be suspended. The New York Times dubbed San Diego “Enron-by-the-Sea.” Under pressure, the city’s then-mayor resigned early in his second term.
With his reputation as a successful turn-around executive and a steady leader, civic leaders urged Sanders to run for mayor. In late 2005, after winning in a special election, Mayor Sanders took office with one goal in mind: to right the city’s financial ship and ensure accountability measures were put in place to prevent future financial scandals.