Renowned Speakers

on the Saroyan Stage

Cedric Alexander, PsyD

Community Safety Commissioner of Minneapolis; Former Chief of Police in DeKalb County, Georgia

“The Future of Public Safety in America”

November 15, 2023 | 10:30am | William Saroyan Theatre

Dr. Cedric Alexander is the first Community Safety Commissioner of Minneapolis and in America. He aims to transform community safety in a city where the murder of George Floyd spurred international outrage and cries for powerful and meaningful change. As a seasoned voice of reason, with over 40 years of experience in law enforcement, he offers forward-thinking solutions and has been called “one of the most qualified, highest-profile leaders in America.”

As a visionary leader, his goal is for Minneapolis to become the safest city in America. To achieve that goal, he will be working collaboratively with the community and all of the professionals involved in community safety. Throughout his career, he has been pivotal in reforming troubled police departments and restoring trust between them and their communities

Highly sought-after for his wise perspective, Dr. Alexander also serves as a Law Enforcement Analyst for NBC and MSNBC where he sparks thoughtful conversations around the future of law enforcement and public safety. He also provides further commentary on NBC and MSNBC programs including The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell, The ReidOut with Joy Reid, Morning Joe, and The Beat with Ari Melber.

Cedric served as former Chief of Police in DeKalb County, GA, previous President of the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives, and member of President Obama’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing among his accomplishments. He currently sits on the board of the Innocence Project, working to exonerate the wrongly convicted through DNA testing and reforming the criminal justice system to prevent future injustice.

He is also the author of In Defense of Public Service: How 22 Million Government Workers Will Save Our Republic which features endorsements from the late U.S. Representative Elijah Cummings, Retired Major General James “Spider” Marks, and attorney Barry Scheck from the Innocence Project. His insight into the non-elected “fourth branch” of government—our nation’s public servants, civil servants, and first responders—as those who will save the nation by helping bring our greatly divided society together is timely.

In his role as an expert on law enforcement, Cedric has testified before the House Oversight and Reform Committee on Facial Recognition Technology on body cameras, drones, and crime mapping.

With a doctorate in clinical psychology from Wright State University, Cedric is equipped to address the prevailing issues nationwide. He conveys a sharp understanding of human nature, the breadth of issues facing both the police and communities of color and how to create a solution everyone can unite behind. Widely respected for his ability to lead thoughtfully and respectfully, he transcends both public and private sectors in an effort to foster positive change.