Celebrating Bill Citty, 2019 Visions Honoree

Bill Citty, 2019 Visions HonoreeCelebrating Bill Citty, 2019 Visions Honoree
Linh M. Sasser, Marketing Coordinator, Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits

The Oklahoma Center for Nonprofits (OKCNP) will honor seven nonprofit leaders in six categories on December 3, 2019, at Visions: A Celebration of Nonprofit Leaders. In the weeks leading up to the event, we are spotlighting the honorees in each category.

The President’s Award recipient, Bill Citty, was Oklahoma City Police Department’s (OKCPD) longest-serving police chief. He served in the police department for nearly 42 years and as police chief for 15 years.

“I had a commitment to people in trying to make things better by trying to improve the lives of people,” said Bill. “So, I joined the police department for a job and fell in love with it.”

Bill graduated from Northwest Classen High School prior to receiving his Bachelor of Science from Oklahoma State University. He is also a graduate of the FBI National Academy, Senior Management Institute for Police, National Executive Institute and the Federal Emergency Management Institute.

In 1977, Bill joined OKCPD as a patrol officer and held positions of police detective and Deputy Chief over the Administration Bureau. Bill was serving as OKCPD’s public information officer at the time of the Oklahoma City Bombing. Following the tragic event, he set up a command center and served as liaison to the FBI during the investigation. In 2003, Bill became OKCPD’s 48th Chief of Police.

During his time as police chief, Bill made it a point to be proactive and think outside of the box. He worked with the nonprofit sector, starting programs such as Palomar: Oklahoma City’s Family Justice Center to help break the cycle of abuse, addiction and incarceration. Bill also serves on the board for the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum.

“The police chief has the responsibility of being out at the forefront of issues and building the trust of the community,” said Bill. “I tell people I couldn’t have been chief for 15 years, if all I was doing was sitting in an office managing the police department, if I wasn’t also out working with the nonprofits and building that trust. We all need each other in a lot of different ways and the good things I was seeing people do in the community helped continue to motivate me to do my job and to do it the best I could.”

The President’s Award goes to an individual as a special recognition and is selected by the President and Chief Executive Officer of OKCNP, Marnie Taylor.

“I have had the privilege to serve with Bill on several board of directors and have witnessed his passion for this city, its people and for both to thrive,” Marnie said. “I cannot imagine someone busier than the chief of police, being pulled in many directions, and he has made the choice to serve.”

To learn more about the 2019 Visions Awards or to purchase tickets visit https://www.okcnp.org/visions.

Read about each of the 2019 Visions Honorees:
Bill Citty, President’s Award
Paula Gates, Inasmuch Special Recognition Award
Christie Luther, Rodney Bivens Innovation Award
David and Jean McLaughlin, Lifetime Achievement Award
Joanna Trimble Smith, Pat Potts Visionary Award
Jean Winfrey, Pat Potts Visionary Award

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