Oak Park Police Chief receives leadership award from Concordia University in River Forest

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By Devin Rose

Staff Reporter

Two Oak Parkers, including Police Chief Rick Tanksley, have been named recipients of the Outstanding Community Leadership Award from Concordia University, according to a statement sent Monday from the River Forest school.

The Community Awards for Excellence in Learning and Leadership program was established in 2003, the statement said. It recognizes contributions by individuals and organizations in Chicago's suburbs to leadership, education and humanitarianism.

Tanksley has served as chief of the Oak Park Police Department since 2001 and was "a principal architect" of the department's community policing program, the statement said. He graduated from the FBI National Academy and the Senior Management Institute of Police, and has also served as chairman of a Homeland Security Committee for Cook County.

Tanksley joins the Eli's Cheesecake Company and Oak Park community leader Federico d'Escoto, who will also receive awards through the program.

Eli's president Marc Schulman has been a long time supporter of the Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences and is co-chair of its Business Advisory Board. D'Escoto is owner and president of an organization offering construction services. He also serves as president of the Hispanic American Construction Industry Association, which advocates for minority and women-owned construction firms.

Awards will be presented at a banquet March 23 at Oak Park Country Club in River Grove. Tickets are $150 each and proceeds will support scholarships for local students attending Concordia University. To purchase tickets, call 708-209-3555.

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Posted: February 1st, 2012 4:37 AM

The fact that Slowiak is no longer on the force speaks well of the current PD. He's a bad apple, and everything he posts on here merely serves to demonstrate not just that, but he is an ignoramous who doesn't even, for example, understand the bill of rights and what the first amendment allows and doesn't allow. He's got an axe to grind, and as long as he draws a taxpayer funded pension for sitting on his ass, I expect him to keep grinding away.

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 31st, 2012 1:23 PM

Oh Brian please!!! You point is clear and concise. I concern the OPPD to be an excellent department, and of course there are always going to be a few who aren't up to the task, but OPPD gets rid of them. It's the political part that can become the problem and when they are wrong, they represent a negative view towards the Police Officers who are stuck with them.

Oh Brian please!!!  

Posted: January 31st, 2012 12:02 PM

When I retire and become an old man I can write my memoirs and use my real name...until then there is no benefit to it. Call it cowardly if you want to. Brian's entitled to his own opinion it just appears that ANYTHING about the police that comes up draws him and some indepth criticism. He reminds me of people you meet in life that no matter what happens they're not happy and they're going to complain. I don't even disagree with everything he says, I just detect bitterness and it's annoying.

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: January 31st, 2012 10:52 AM

Oh Brian please!!! Brian Slowiak uses his real name. Is there a reason you don't, since you are telling him to GROW A PAIR.

Steve from Oak Park  

Posted: January 31st, 2012 10:45 AM

Chief Tanksley was SUSPENDED WITHOUT PAY for 45 days for an inappropriate behavior. HE is the one who sets the standard for the rest of the department. HE is the one making a mockery of the police department. HE is the one who should grow ANOTHER pair and do what's best for the morale of the department: LEAVE!

Oh Brian please!!!  

Posted: January 31st, 2012 9:54 AM

ANY OTHER JOB where you say something like that openly or you make public statements concerning your employer would get you fired or at least promotion chances would be over. That's the world the rest of live in. You are such a crybaby its ridiculous. You're not doing any favors for the image of Oak Park Police always crying on here about this or that. You are one of the reasons people take cops for a joke these days. You leave and now take shots on the comment board for a living. GROW A PAIR.

Another Coward from Police Department  

Posted: January 31st, 2012 9:18 AM

Well said, Brian. Thank you.

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2012 9:26 PM

Living in fear of your boss. Ask the officer what happened to him when he mentioned that it was easier to bend a dispatcher over a hood of a squad car than get a squad car. Instant transfer.

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: January 30th, 2012 7:16 PM

To Nancy Stuerma: Cowardly? All officers were required to attend mass roll call ordered by then Vil Man. Carl Swenson. The message no officer should talk to the press about Tanksleys problems. The VM had to be reminded that any officer has the right to speak out, of duty, and using the words in my opinion. Just another example of how OP officials curtail free speech.police officers under punishment are not allowed to speak to the press.

U goofballs...  

Posted: January 30th, 2012 1:33 PM

What will the Illinois State Police find with an audit? The same methods departments across the nation are using? Here's a hint, what SOME of you numbnuts are hinting to is being alleged at departments across the country. You'd be using your brain to realize that he has a boss too and that "the man behind the curtain" isn't a department head. Haven't you realized that nationally, even in our great Chicago, crime is down and you crybabies think crime reporting is an OP issue...try reading


Posted: January 29th, 2012 4:44 PM


OP Rez  

Posted: January 27th, 2012 4:24 PM

Sounds like your jealous of the fact that Tanksley made chief and your just some low life.

ignorant misinformed idiots  

Posted: January 26th, 2012 5:49 PM

Yes, the last 10 years, Tanksley's tenure. Where do you get your misinformation from OP Rez?

OP Rez  

Posted: January 26th, 2012 5:11 PM

For the last 10 years? I dont think so.

I.C. Things  

Posted: January 26th, 2012 1:05 PM

Tanksley isn't fit to lead a Cub Scout Troop. Why not go ask the Village Board about the internal investigation they buried just recently about his unethical behavior. As for crime being down 39 percent, please get your head out of the sand. The only reason the numbers say crime is down is because Tanksley & Ambrose have the Crime Analysis Unit and the Record Division changing the titles of reported crimes. Maybe the Illinois State Police need to do an audit and get the true numbers.

OP Rez  

Posted: January 26th, 2012 12:11 PM

I suppose its a double edged sword. You get the credit when things are good. When things are bad you get all the credit. In both scenarios you may not have as much influence as the perception.

Steve from Oak Park  

Posted: January 26th, 2012 11:24 AM

Yeah, you go Chief! Right out the door!


Posted: January 26th, 2012 9:24 AM

Crime rates at a 39 year low? I'd say hes doing something right. You never want to be the smartest guy in the room. You want to surround yourself with the smartest guys/gals in the room. Go Chief

Mike S. from Oak Park  

Posted: January 25th, 2012 9:46 PM

The Department does a great job with good people, but its in spite of, not because of Tanksley. He isnt the right guy for the job. It isn't hate, it just is true.


Posted: January 25th, 2012 3:47 PM

OP Police do a great job, especially considering the proximity of our town to one of the worst parts of Chicago. The rare times I've needed to call 911, the police have been there in a matter of minutes. Kudos to them and their hard work!

Are You Kidding Me ?  

Posted: January 25th, 2012 2:44 PM

BTW, as far as the rest of the OP Police Department goes, I think they do an outstanding job.

Are You Kidding Me ?  

Posted: January 25th, 2012 2:41 PM

Nancy, what's cowardly is the Board and the Chief hiding behind what happened because of confidentiality. So much for transparency in Oak Park. If only you knew !! Why don't you head on over to Village Hall and ask the Chief yourself.


Posted: January 25th, 2012 1:43 PM

The fish rots from the head down. The police do a good job for the residents DESPITE the man behind the curtain.


Posted: January 25th, 2012 1:25 PM

So clearly its a political work issue. Didnt get that raise you wanted. Poor Baby. Crime at 39 yr low? Maybe its time for the dept to clean house of the bad apples!

Another Coward from Police Department  

Posted: January 25th, 2012 12:43 PM

You would be a coward to if it meant the possibility of incurring the wrath of your boss and losing your job.

Nancy Stuermer from Oak Park  

Posted: January 25th, 2012 12:02 PM

@T.J. and @Are You Kidding Me. It's funny how haters never leave their full real name. Rather cowardly, if you ask me.

T.J. from Oak Park  

Posted: January 24th, 2012 7:41 PM

Tanksley is no leader. This guy should be summarily fired. What a waste of money.

Are You Kidding Me ?  

Posted: January 24th, 2012 11:52 AM

Tanksley should have been fired back in 2003. Political correctness run amok. http://oakparkjournal.com/Stories2002/Tanksley-on-Leave-Jan-10-2003.html

John Butch Murtagh from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: January 24th, 2012 12:13 AM

Congratulations, Chief. Well deserved!

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