Winthrop Police Chief Terence Delehanty is back at the helm of the department following eleven weeks of professional studies and administrative courses at the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia.
Delehanty began his training in the program Sept. 29 and graduated Dec. 14. FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III presented a graduation diploma to Delehanty at an impressive ceremony.
As stated in the overview on its Web site, “The FBI Academy is dedicated to being the premier law enforcement learning and research center and advocate for law enforcement’s best practices worldwide.”
Participation in the Academy is by invitation only and attendance and graduation from it carries significant prestige and honor.
Delehanty and other leaders and managers of state and local police, sheriffs’ departments, and federal law enforcement agencies attended the program.
The chief said he learned from other chiefs and law enforcement professionals in the area about the benefits of participating in the prestigious program. He reached out to Gary Coffey, the FBI training officer and coordinator for the Boston office.
“The FBI was pleased that we were seeking to participate in some of its career development training that enhances our department’s relationship with the agency,” said Delehanty.
At the Academy, Delehanty attended classes instructed by FBI personnel in such subject areas as managing homicide investigations, managing violent crimes, drug use in modern society, conflict resolution, and officer-involved shootings.
Each week the chief attended leadership conferences with “enrichment speakers” such as former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Hugh Shelton, helicopter pilot Michael Durant (Black Hawk Down), and Bobby Smith, a Louisiana state trooper who was shot in the line of duty.
“The speakers provided tremendous insight in to leadership and the way we should be leading our respective departments,” said Delehanty.
Delehanty was also required to participate in a physical education and conditioning program three times a week.
“There was a conditioning challenge each week and the final challenge was the ‘Yellow Brick Road,’ which is a 6.2-mile obstacle course,” said Delehanty. “The first three miles consists of 23 obstacles you have to get over and the last 3.2 miles was a run that included a half-mile steep hill.”
Delehanty credited Marie Hamilton and the staff of RPM Fitness in Winthrop for preparing him for the rigorous physical fitness test. Delehanty trained at RPM for the past 18 months and continues to work out at the facility on a regular basis.
Delehanty said all the knowledge and training he gained at the Academy will prove beneficial in his duties as the commanding officer of the Winthrop Police Department. Based on his training at the Academy, he intends to conduct an analysis of statistics related to drug abuse in the town through the perspective of human behavior.
“I learned a lot of things that we could be doing and will be doing in the future in the department [WPD],” said Delehanty. “The networking was one of the most beneficial parts of it – I now have access to 260 law enforcement executives. If I have an issue, I can call upon other senior officers from throughout the United States. I feel that is a tremendous benefit that I acquired by attending the Academy.”
Delehanty said he was grateful to Town Manager James McKenna and the Town Council for allowing him to attend the Academy. He thanked his wife Marcy and their daughters, Jennifer and Sarah, for their support. He also commended Winthrop Police Lieutenant Frank Scarpa for his excellent work as the Officer in Charge of the department during his time at the Academy.
Delehanty said he has received questions about his professional future since his return from the Academy. Other employment opportunities are likely to open for Delehanty on different levels in the law enforcement field.
“I am very happy here in the town of Winthrop,” said Delehanty. “This training was to enhance my ability to lead the department and not because I want to go anyplace else. I have no reason to leave. It’s been a great experience being the police chief and I have a great relationship with the town manager and the Town Council and the fire chief as well.”
Delehanty will speak about his experiences at the FBI National Academy during an appearance at the next Town Council meeting on Jan. 8.
Information, including but not limited to the sentence, “Participation [in the Academy] is by invitation only,” was obtained from the FBI Academy Web site and used in the compilation and writing of this story.