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A retired 25-year veteran of the Denver Police Department and former Deputy Commissioner of the New York Police Department, Dr. Tracie L. Keesee is Senior Vice President of Justice Initiatives and Co-Founder of the Center for Policing Equity (CPE). Dr. Keesee works to improve equity both within law enforcement agencies and the vulnerable communities they serve. To do this, she works closely with communities to ensure their voices are centered in the co-production and redesigning public safety systems; and she uses data-driven interventions to help law enforcement agencies receive the resources needed to create more equitable outcomes.
Dr. Keesee has also served as Project Director of the Department of Justice-funded National Initiative for Building Community Trust and Justice Initiative. Dr. Keesee took a sabbatical from CPE in 2016 to serve the New York Police Department in several roles; first as the Deputy Commissioner of Training, directing the implementation of transformative initiatives including the restructuring of the recruitment curriculum. Dr. Keesee subsequently served as the first ever Deputy Commissioner of Equity and Inclusion for NYPD, where she was responsible for the overall organizational development and implementation of the NYPD’s Equity and Inclusion strategic framework. During this time, she also served as an advisor to the Police Commissioner on the implementation of accountability systems that monitor training, recruitment, employee opportunities, and complaints to help increase the organization’s ability to attract and retain an inclusive and diverse workforce. Additionally, in 2021 she was appointed by the U.N. Human Rights Council President to serve a 3- year term as a member of a newly established expert mechanism tasked with advancing racial justice and equity of Africans and people of African descent in the context law enforcement around the world.
She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Metropolitan State College-Denver, academic certifications in Public Policy and Public Administration and a Master of Arts degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Colorado at Denver, a Ph.D. in Intercultural Communications from the University of Denver, and a Diversity and Inclusion Certification from Cornell University. She is also a graduate of the 203rd Session of the FBI National Academy at Quantico, Virginia. Dr. Keesee has published numerous articles across a variety of collected anthologies and peer-reviewed scientific journals