Linfield College’s Public Safety (CPS) and Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) operations have undergone a merger.
Effective Sept. 1, the merger made Rebecca Wale, director of EHS, acting director of CPS as well.
Wale was hired in June 2011 as the director of EHS. Last spring, she accepted an additional interim assignment as director of CPS, following the previous director’s April resignation.
The merger was never announced to students, so it just came to light for most of them. In an email, Linda Powell, senior director of Human Resources and College Safety, explained it this way:
“Due to her expertise across multiple disciplines, we found considerable efficiency, and increases in collaboration, communication and attention to matters of safety, by bringing together the previously separate departments of EHS and CPS.”
Powell said Wale was appointed to the role because of her experience with emergency management leadership, as well as private security leadership and emergency response.
She is certified by the federal Department of Homeland Security to train college and community emergency response teams. She also has previous experience in college campus safety, in which capacity she worked with community fire and police agencies.
“I am so pleased to have Rebecca Wale—a consummate safety professional, who supports Linfield’s commitment to a safe educational, living and working environment—leading Linfield’s safety programs,” Powell said.
According to Powell, the merger merely formalizes a role Wale assumed in April when she stepped in as interim director of CPS.
At that time, Wale met with members of the Student Senate, Powell said. And she has since participated in various student-focused activities, such as resident adviser training.
“The formalization of her role was communicated to staff and faculty as part of a larger announcement, and centered on employee issues,” Powell said. Asked why students weren’t notified, she termed it “certainly something for the college to consider going forward.”
Wale declined to comment, deferring to Powell.
Jesssica Prokop can be reached at email@example.com.