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Dr. Erroll Southers
The first negative interaction with the police at the age of ten, shaped the trajectory of Erroll Southers’ life and career. From that moment he knew he wanted to reform policing and change the relationship between the police and the black community from the inside out.
Southers joined the Santa Monica police department as a police officer, working gangs and other details for seven years. He was appointed to the FBI, working foreign counterintelligence, terrorism and as a member of the Bureau’s SWAT Team. He served Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Deputy Director in the California Office of Homeland Security, Chief of Homeland Security and Intelligence for the Los Angeles World Airports Police Department (the nation’s largest airport police department). And finally he served as President Barack Obama’s first nominee for Assistant Secretary of the Transportation Security Administration.
Dr. Erroll G. Southers is now the Director of the Safe Communities Institute and Homegrown Violent Extremism Studies at the University of Southern California Sol Price School of Public Policy, where he is also a Professor of the Practice in National & Homeland Security. With police reform at the top of mind, experts across the country are tapping Southers’ vast experience and expertise to create the change he has always sought at the local and national level - placing an emphasis on humanity above all else to restructure and rethink policing and safety.
Many of us experience sports much like religion: they give us a shared identity, a sense of community, and a common purpose. So what wisdom can we draw from the sports world to help us navigate the chaos and confusion — and also the awakening and transformation — happening today? Join host Varun Soni, Dean of Religious and Spiritual Life at the University of Southern California, in this limited-run series from Religion of Sports.