City of Durant hires new Public Safety Director
On Monday, July 31, the City of Durant welcomed new Public Safety Director Brian Heverly.
Heverly, a 25-year Army veteran, joins the City’s team after six years as the Director of Emergency Services at the United States Military Academy in West Point, New York. At West Point, Heverly was in charge of the Department of the Army Security Guards who provide access control to the installation, a police department with approximately 100 Military Police officers, and the West Point Fire Department.
Prior to his arrival at West Point, he served as a Military Police officer for 19 years. In this time, he held leadership positions ranging from platoon leader to Provost Marshal of the 101st Airborne Division and deployed seven times, including stints in Liberia, Afghanistan and Iraq. He later became the Chief of Police at Fort Bliss, Texas, where he held the position for over a year.
Ready for a new adventure, Heverly took to the internet to find his next career. “My wife and I said, ‘Hey, we can go anywhere,’” he said. “We could go anywhere, so that’s what we did.
“I applied on Indeed and didn’t hear back for about a month and a half,” he explained. “From what I understand an extensive search was conducted for the Public Safety Director. I was fortunate enough to be offered the job.” Heverly accepted the position the next day.
Earlier this summer, he spent one month job shadowing then-Interim Public Safety Director Rick Rumsey. “With Brian’s background, he will be an asset to the City of Durant,” said Rumsey. “I look forward to working with him now as the Interim City Manager.”
During the month-long internship, Heverly began acquainting himself with city government. “I was exposed to the municipal way of life, so to speak,” he said. “I was fairly comfortable with the whole concept of firefighting, law enforcement, also emergency management, but I was learning how it all fits together here in Durant, and how that works in the municipal form of government versus military.”
Since then, he has begun looking for ways to improve the departments he oversees, including Police, Fire, Neighborhood Services, Animal Control and Emergency Management.
One of his goals is to see a new animal shelter built, citing the necessity of a new location and better facility for animals, employees and visitors.
In the meantime, he plans to continue learning about the City’s public safety departments. “You know, we’re taught that in the first 90 days, unless something’s illegal, unethical, immoral, or unsafe, observe it and make an assessment,” he said. “The internship gave me a little bit of a head start, and I look forward to getting to know the team a lot better.
“I'm excited to be here and excited to work with a great team of professionals that I've had the pleasure of meeting over the past month and a half,” Heverly added. “Hopefully I can bring some of my experience and make the organization as a whole better and improve the services we provide to the citizens of and visitors to Durant.”