Public Administration faculty earns honorary title with Guam Police Department
Rivera was named an honorary deputy chief of police by the Guam Police Department on Aug. 7, 2018. (From left) Honorary Deputy Chief of Police Milton K. Morinaga (managing director of PHR Ken Micronesia), Honorary Deputy Chief of Police Joe Blas (assistant general manager of Hotel Nikko Guam), Chief of Police Joseph I. Cruz, Honorary Deputy Chief of Police John J. Rivera (SBPA graduate programs chairman MPA/PMBA, and director of the Regional Center for Public Policy), Honorary Deputy Chief of Police Ron McNinch (Public Administration and Legal Studies Division chairman at UOG); and Honorary Deputy Chief of Police Mike Wu (general manager of the Guam Home Center).
University of Guam faculty member John J. Rivera has earned a new title. The assistant
professor of public administration, School of Business & Public Administration graduate
program chairman (Master of Public Administration and Professional Master of Business
Administration), and director of the Regional Center for Public Policy is now also an honorary
deputy chief of police under the Guam Police Department as of Aug. 7, 2018. The title is one
that is awarded to outstanding citizens who have made valuable contributions to GPD.
John J. Rivera, assistant professor of public administration at the University of Guam, School of Business and Public Administration graduate program chairman, and director of the Regional Center for Public Policy, with his two sons showing his Certificate of Appointment as an honorary deputy chief of police from the Guam Police Department.
“Throughout the years, there have been exemplary individuals who have believed in GPD and its mission and who have contributed in many ways, and we are very thankful for all of them,” said Frank Ishizaki, the former chief of police who established the Honorary Deputy Chief of Police Program in 2004. Ishizaki also serves as an instructor of public administration and legal studies at UOG.
Rivera now joins the ranks of those exemplary individuals, having contributed to public safety over the years through his work with UOG’s Public Administration and Legal Studies Department and the Regional Center for Public Policy.
Rivera, who is the son of a retired GPD detective, said that this is a special honor not just for him, but for all who so selflessly give in the line of service and make the community a better place.
In this way, experiential learning and community-based research is important to him and is a priority in the professional Public Administration, Criminal Justice, and the Master of Public Administration programs. He reminds students that positive change is up to them.
“We can wait, complain, and expect others to solve our problems for us, or we can be at the forefront of being change agents in our community,” Rivera said.
The Honorary Deputy Chief of Police Program was introduced after the former GPD headquarters in Tiyan was destroyed by Typhoon Pongsona in 2002. Ishizaki partnered with Captain Kim Santos and retired Chief of Police Paul Suba to reach out to the business community for assistance in revitalizing the department. Over the next couple of years, a small group of individuals came together and donated their talent and resources to help restore the department. Today, the program remains a way to honor and thank individuals who support the police department and its work.
Those awarded with the title become part of the GPD family and, in their own way, continue to contribute to the mission of the police department. They are ambassadors and advocates, a positive voice for the department in the community.
Rivera said he is especially grateful to Chief Joseph I. Cruz for his confidence and support of his nomination. He is also thankful to Santos for her leadership and care for the program. Cruz and other GPD leadership are alumni of UOG’s MPA Program, Rivera said.
“If people come to the University of Guam because they can get an education right here at home, then our students are leaders who make a difference right here, in the place we call home,” he said. “I am humbled and look forward to future collaborations and partnerships between our great University and the Guam Police Department.”